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Social Complexity and the Management of Small-Diameter Stands

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The disposition of small-diameter forest stands is linked to forest health, ecological restoration, and timber harvest–highly contentious issues without public or technical consensus. We present results of a qualitative social assessment focusing on small-diameter stand management on the Colville National Forest in northeastern Washington to illustrate social complexity embedded in the decisions that confront forest managers. The discussion is broadened to suggest that the social complexity inherent in small-diameter stand management is an issue that must be confronted throughout the West (and to some extent the entire country), as increasing emphasis is placed on forest restoration on public lands.

Keywords: ecological restoration; environmental management; fire; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; public participation; silviculture; social science

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Senior Environmental Planner Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade & Douglas, Inc., Portland, Oregon 2: Associate Professor Department of Natural Resource Sciences, Washington State University, PO Box 646410 Pullman, WA, 99164-6410 3: Professor and Chair Department of Natural Resource Sciences, Washington State University, PO Box 646410 Pullman, WA, 99164-6410,

Publication date: December 1, 2001

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.
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