7 results found
Raum S, Hand K, Hall C, et al., 2019, Achieving impact from ecosystem assessment and valuation of urban greenspace: the case of i-Tree Eco in Great Britain, Landscape and Urban Planning, Vol: 190, ISSN: 0169-2046
Numerous tools have been developed to assist environmental decision-making, but there has been little examination of whether these tools achieve this aim, particularly for urban environments. This study aimed to evaluate the use of the i-Tree Eco tool in Great Britain, an assessment tool developed to support urban forest management. The study employed a documentary review, an online survey, and interviews in six case study areas to examine five impacts (instrumental, conceptual, capacity-building, enduring connectivity, and culture/attitudes towards knowledge exchange) and to identify which factors inhibited or supported achievement of impact. It revealed that the i-Tree Eco projects had helped to increase knowledge of urban forests and awareness of the benefits they provide. While there was often broad use of i-Tree Eco findings in various internal reports, external forums, and discussions of wider policies and plans, direct changes relating to improved urban forest management, increased funding or new tree policies were less frequent. The barriers we identified which limited impact included a lack of project champions, policy drivers and resources, problems with knowledge transfer and exchange, organisational and staff change, and negative views of trees. Overall, i-Tree Eco, similar to other environmental decision-making tools, can help to improve the management of urban trees when planned as one step in a longer process of engagement with stakeholders and development of new management plans and policies. In this first published impact evaluation of multiple i-Tree Eco projects, we identified eight lessons to enhance the impact of future i-Tree Eco projects, transferable to other environmental decision-making tools.
Collins C, Cook-Monie I, Raum S, 2019, What do people know? Ecosystem services, public perception and sustainable management of urban park trees in London, U.K., Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, Vol: 43, ISSN: 1618-8667
Engagement with users and other public stakeholder groups is important when making planning and planting decisions for urban parks; it ensures the public feel involved and that decisions have longstanding support. Park trees provide an array of important ecosystem services but are threatened by pressures such as climate change, diseases and lack of management resources. It is important to ensure the public appreciate the breadth of services provided, and the challenges faced, by park trees. To evaluate the baseline public understanding of these issues, we surveyed 344 members of the public in London, U.K. parks to examine their perception of the importance of park trees and their understanding of the challenges they face. This exploratory study found that though the term ‘Ecosystem Service’ was largely unfamiliar, the public value park trees highly. Affluence and other demographic factors appear to have little influence on these perceptions, however, age and visit frequency slightly influenced the perceived importance of trees for their contribution to park aesthetics. Urbanisation and proximate human threats, especially pollution were considered by respondents the most important challenges facing park trees. Disease and climate change ranked 4th and 15th respectively, indicating that public education about the challenges facing park trees may be needed in advance of, or as part of plans for sustainable park management and plantings.
Fellenor J, Barnett J, Potter C, et al., 2019, 'I'd like to report a suspicious looking tree': Public concern, public attention and the nature of reporting about ash dieback in the United Kingdom, Public Understanding of Science, Vol: 28, Pages: 339-356, ISSN: 0963-6625
'Public concern', a ubiquitous notion used in descriptive and explanatory modes by policy makers, academics and the media, is often presented as axiomatic. However, the variability with which it is deployed in different contexts, for example, as justification for policy attention or having equivalence with what is considered 'newsworthy', belies this status. This article presents an empirical analysis of emails and phone calls from the UK public to UK government agencies, reporting suspected cases of ash dieback disease - a tree health issue which attracted intense media and policy attention in the United Kingdom in 2012. We challenge the view that public attentiveness is necessarily indicative of public concern, or that media attention can be taken as its proxy. Examination of concern at macro and micro levels reveals heterogeneous processes with multiple dimensions. Understanding the nature of public concern is crucial in enabling more effective policy development and operational responses to risk-related issues.
Raum S, 2018, A framework for integrating systematic stakeholder analysis in ecosystem services research: Stakeholder mapping for forest ecosystem services in the UK, Ecosystem Services, Vol: 29, Pages: 170-184, ISSN: 2212-0416
The concept of ecosystem services offers a useful framework for the systematic assessment of the multiple benefits ecosystems deliver. However, the anthropogenic focus of the concept also requires a detailed understanding of the stakeholders interested in the goods and services ecosystems provide. Indeed, linking ecosystem services to stakeholders and systematically mapping their potential stakes in these is essential for effective, equitable and sustainable ecosystem governance and management because it specifies who is in the system and why. This paper endeavours to provide a better appreciation of systematic stakeholder analysis in ecosystem services research by, first, presenting an illustrative stakeholder analysis example, using a key natural resource in relation to ecosystem services: forests in the UK. In this exploratory study, a qualitative approach was adopted, using a literature review and interviews to identify the stakeholders with a stake in the provisioning, regulating and cultural ecosystem services of forests, to distinguish their characteristics, and to examine their relationships towards each other on different levels. The illustrative example then informed the design of a conceptual framework for the systematic application of stakeholder analysis in ecosystem services research. The comprehensive framework consists of a three-phase model entailing the planning phase, the execution of the actual stakeholder analysis phase, and, finally the subsequent actions. The framework incorporates stakeholders and ecosystem services on a geographical, institutional and ecosystem level. Systematic stakeholder analysis can be used to develop future activities linked to ecosystem services, including new policy or instruments, stakeholder engagement activities, and decision-making processes.
Raum S, 2017, Reasons for adoption and advocacy of the ecosystem services concept in UK forestry, Ecological Economics, Vol: 143, Pages: 47-54, ISSN: 1873-6106
The ecosystem services concept has enjoyed widespread interest and recognition in recent years. In particular, the monetary valuation and commodification of ecosystem services in form of payments for ecosystem services schemes and the development of new markets for ecosystem services has appreciated large popularity. However, who is behind this strong momentum towards ecosystem services and especially why is less well known. In this paper I aim to shed light on this by looking specifically at advocates of the concept of ecosystem services, using forestry in the United Kingdom (UK) as an example. I explore the motivations for accommodating or actively pursuing ecosystem services thinking in this important sector through interviews with forestry and conservation experts. Four prominent groups with a specific interest in the ecosystem services concept in the context of UK forestry are governmental organisations, non-governmental conservation organisations, private forest owners, and the timber and forest industry. These stakeholder groups are interested in this new perspective, chiefly, but not exclusively, because (1) it is required under international obligations; (2) it is in line with dominant market political philosophy; (3) it holds the promise to include the environment more fully into prevailing economic decision-making processes; (4) it can help to draw more attention to biodiversity conservation; (5) it holds the promise of new sources of income from both public and private sources; and (6) it can be used as a convenient argument to promote further tree planting. However, these groups have different, but frequently overlapping reasons for pursuing this new perspective. The results provide a baseline and important insights into who was embracing ecosystem services thinking and why during the early years of the adoption of this approach in the UK.
Raum S, 2017, The ecosystem approach, ecosystem services and established forestry policy approaches in the United Kingdom, Land Use Policy, Vol: 64, Pages: 282-291, ISSN: 1873-5754
A series of approaches have been proposed for natural resource management and biodiversity conservation in recent decades. In the important forestry sector, two of the most dominant policy paradigms have been multi-purpose forestry and sustainable forest management. The Convention on Biological Diversity, amongst other transnational commitments, added the ecosystem approach and its related idea of ecosystem services to this succession which is increasingly becoming the basis for natural resource management, including in the United Kingdom (UK). However, this latest addition raises the stimulating question of whether in forestry the ecosystem approach and the associated ecosystem services concept really constitute something fundamentally new, or are merely an extension or re-branding of existing policy approaches. This paper contributes to a lively contemporary debate surrounding the ecosystem approach and ecosystem services, by examining how these two interrelated but distinctly different concepts are currently understood and adopted within UK forestry and in the context of established forestry policy paradigms. For this purpose, I undertook a review of the scholarly literature and legal and policy documents which have been triangulated with a survey of the attitudes, interpretations and opinions of forestry stakeholders through expert interviews. The analysis suggests that in the UK forestry sector, as elsewhere, the frequency of, often broad and ambiguous approaches to natural resource management and biodiversity conservation in general, and forestry policy and management in particular, are causing confusion amongst some stakeholders, who, unsurprisingly frequently conflate concepts seemingly without understanding the details. However, a clear understanding of the differences and similarities of these important concepts, stemming from overlapping but different disciplines, is crucially important for successful policy implementation and sustainable forest managemen
Raum S, Potter C, 2015, Forestry paradigms and policy change: The evolution of forestry policy in Britain in relation to the ecosystem approach, Land Use Policy, Vol: 49, Pages: 462-470, ISSN: 1873-5754
Forestry policy and practice in Britain has been subject to a series of paradigm changes since the establishment of the Forestry Commission in 1919. Drawing on a documentary analysis of legislation, published policy statements, commentaries and scholarly critiques, this paper argues that British forestry policy has undergone three significant paradigm shifts since it was first mooted in the late 19th century. With origins in a largely ad hoc and laissez-faire attitude towards forest expansion and management which dominated up to World War I, a productivist stance based on intensive mono-culture plantations in order to reduce import dependence then held sway until the early 1970s. This has since been overlain with ideas about multi-functionality and sustainability that continue to be important today. The new Ecosystem Approach (and its specific emphasis on the provision of ecosystem services) can arguably be viewed as an emerging new forestry paradigm era in which ideas of resilience and sustainability are to the fore. It is suggested in conclusion that while the policy and practice of forestry in Britain continues to mirror broader shifts in environmental governance within the country, these in turn are increasingly influenced by international debates and obligations.
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