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Do Forest Stewardship Programs Target Productive Lands? A Southern Illinois Case Study

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The Spatial Analysis Project (SAP) was designed to determine the stewardship potential of land enrolled in the US Forest Service‐Forest Stewardship Program (FSP) and prioritize land for limited program dollars. Illinois forest policy states that timber production must be the primary goal of plans in the Illinois FSP. Using seven southern Illinois counties as a case study, we analyzed the effectiveness of the FSP in enrolling area according to stewardship potential and forest productivity. Although the FSP is preferentially capturing high stewardship potential areas, the program is not effective in prioritizing highly productive land for cost share assistance or identifying such areas for future enrollment. This study illustrates how geographic information systems can be used to modify the SAP stewardship potential data layer to identify lands with both high stewardship potential and high forest productivity. This methodology could be adapted to maximize FSP values by targeting tracts of the greatest programmatic value (e.g., the most productive timber-producing lands) to preferentially receive limited public funds.
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Keywords: forest management; nonindustrial private forest landowners; policy; private forestland

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-06-01

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    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.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.675 (Rank 20/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 39.6 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

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