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A Method for Integrating Risk and Attitude Toward Risk into Forest Planning

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The risk associated with decision alternatives and the attitude of the decision-maker toward risk are two important factors that should be considered in forest planning. This paper proposes an operational way of integrating both risk and attitude toward risk into tactical forest planning. Two sources of risk are considered in the proposed planning method: timber price and level of tree growth. A scenario approach is used to generate a distribution of possible outcomes for alternative forest plans. Each outcome is described by a priority index, which is computed from a priority function. The priority function is estimated by Saaty's eigenvalue technique on the basis of pairwise comparisons between the decision criteria selected by the decision-maker. Estimation of attitude toward risk is based on comparison of the importance given to the worst, the expected, and the best outcomes. The optimum plan is sought with a heuristic algorithm. In optimization, different outcomes are converted to priority indices and weighted in a manner that reflects the attitude of the decision-maker toward risk. The case study indicated that level of risk affects the choice of forest plan. In a situation involving risk, the optimum plan may be different for a risk-avoiding, a risk-neutral, and a risk-seeking decision-maker. For. Sci. 42(2):198-205.
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Keywords: Decision analysis; forestry decision-making; optimum harvesting; scenario approach; tactical planning

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Director, Kannus Research Station, The Finnish Forest Research Institute, P.O. Box 44, 69100 Kannus, Finland

Publication date: 1996-05-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.782 (Rank 17/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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