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Title: A network approach to assessing social capacity for landscape planning: The case of fire-prone forests in Oregon, USA

Author: Fischer, A. Paige; Vance-Borland, Ken; Jasny, Lorien; Grimm, Kerry E.; Charnley, Susan;

Date: 2016

Source: Landscape and Urban Planning

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: tManagement of ecological conditions and processes in multiownership landscapes requires cooperationby diverse stakeholder groups. The structure of organizational networks – the extent to which networksallow for interaction among organizations within and across ideological and geographic boundaries –can indicate potential opportunities for cooperation on landscape-scale problems. In the arid landscapesof the western United States, where increasingly large wildfires burn irrespective of property boundariesand land designations, organizations involved in the restoration of forests and the protection of propertyfrom wildfire could benefit from working together to share information and coordinate strategies. Weinvestigated patterns of interaction among organizations concerned with increasingly uncharacteristicwildfire risk in the Eastern Cascades Ecoregion of Oregon for evidence of structural conditions that createopportunity for cooperation. Through social network analysis of interview data, we found that despitesharing concern about wildfire risk in an area with a common set of ecological conditions, organizationswith forest restoration and fire protection goals comprised distinct networks, as did organizations thatfocused on different geographic areas of the ecoregion. When interpreted through the lens of social capitaland organizational theory these findings raise questions about the extent to which the structure of theorganizational network reflects capacity to address wildfire risk in fire-prone forests on the ecoregion-scale. This study provides insights on the utility of a structural approach for investigating social capacityfor landscape-scale planning.

Keywords: organizational networks, social network analysis, social capital, landscape planning, wildfire management, forest restoration

Publication Notes:

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

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Fischer, A. Paige; Vance-Borland, Ken; Jasny, Lorien; Grimm, Kerry E.; Charnley, Susan 2016. A network approach to assessing social capacity for landscape planning: The case of fire-prone forests in Oregon, USA. Landscape and Urban Planning. 147: 18-27.

 


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