Environmental Management

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 363–376 | Cite as

Social Capital in an Outdoor Recreation Context

Article

Abstract

This study examined social capital development in three all-terrain vehicles (ATV) clubs in Maine using an adapted version of Lin’s (2001) social capital theory model. The structural components of social capital identified included collective assets and individual assets in the form of normative behavior and trust relationships. Also identified were counter-norms for individual ATV riders identified as having divergent norms from club members. The second component of social capital is access to and mobilization of network contacts and resources. Access networks in the context of the ATV clubs studied were identified as community and landowner relations while mobilization of resources was existent in club membership attempts toward self-governance and efforts of the statewide “umbrella” organization. Instrumental outcomes benefit society and expressive outcomes benefit the individual. Both types of returns are present in the data suggesting that ATV clubs are creating social capital. This is important information to clubs who desire to market themselves, improve their reputations, and enhance their volunteer association. It is of further interest to state governments who fund clubs through trail grants as proof that a return on investment is being realized. Theoretical and applied implications for these and other types of recreation-based volunteer associations (e.g., clubs, friends groups, advocacy groups) are presented.

Keywords

Social capital Recreation organizations Recreation-based voluntary associations Off-highway vehicles All terrain vehicles Outdoor recreation management 

References

  1. Arai S (2000) Typology of volunteers for a changing sociopolitical context: the impact of social capital, citizenship and civil society. Society and Leisure 23(2):327–352Google Scholar
  2. Arai S, Pedlar A (2003) Moving beyond individualism in leisure theory: a critical analysis of concepts of community and social engagement. Leisure Studies 22:185–202CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. ATV Task Force (2003) ATV solutions: recommendations of Governor John Baldacci’s ATV Task Force. Augusta, ME, 45 pGoogle Scholar
  4. Caldwell LL, Andereck KL (1994) Motives for initiating and continuing membership in a recreation-related voluntary association. Leisure Sciences 16:33–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Davenport MA, Borrie WT (2005) The appropriateness of snowmobiling in national parks: an investigation of the meanings of snowmobiling experiences in Yellowstone National Park. Environmental Management 35(2):151–160CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Davenport MA, Leahy JE, Anderson DH, Jakes PJ (2007) Building trust in natural resource management within local communities: a case study of the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie. Environmental Management 39(3):353–368CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. DeGraaf D, Jordan D (2003) Social capital: how parks and recreation help to build community. Parks and Recreation (magazine). http://www.nrpa.org. Accessed 18 Nov 2007
  8. Dennis S, Zube E (1988) Voluntary association membership of outdoor recreationists: an exploratory study. Leisure Sciences 10:229–245CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dustin DL, Schneider IE (2004) The science of politics/The politics of science: examining the snowmobile controversy in Yellowstone National Park. Environmental Management 34(6):761–767CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fukuyama F (1995) Trust. Simon and Schuster, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  11. Glover TD (2002) Citizenship and the production of public recreation: is there an empirical relationship? Journal of Leisure Research 34(2):204–231Google Scholar
  12. Glover TD (2003) The story of the Queen Anne Memorial Garden: Resisting a dominant cultural narrative. Journal of Leisure Research 35(2):190–212Google Scholar
  13. Glover T (2004) Social capital in the lived experiences of community gardeners. Leisure Sciences 26(2):143–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Gordon CW, Babchuk N (1959) A typology of voluntary associations. American Sociological Review 24(1):22–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Green CB, Grijalva T, Kroll S (2004) Social capital and the value of hunting club memberships. Human Dimensions of Wildlife 9(1):57–68CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hemingway J (1999) Leisure, social capital, and democratic citizenship. Journal of Leisure Research 31(2):150–165Google Scholar
  17. Horne C (2001) Sociological perspectives on the emergence of social norms. In: Hechter M, Opp KD (eds) Social norms. Russell Sage Foundation, New York, pp 3–34Google Scholar
  18. Kramer R (1999) Trust and distrust in organizations: merging perspectives, enduring questions. Annual Review of Psychology 50:569–598CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Leahy J, Anderson D (2008) Trust meanings in community-water resource management agency relationships. Landscape and Urban Planning 87:100–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Levine JM, Moreland RL (1990) Progress in small group research. Annual Review of Psychology 41:585–634 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Lin N (2001) Building a network theory of social capital. In: Lin N, Cook K, Burt RS (eds) Social capital theory and research. Aldine de Gruyter, New York, pp 3–29Google Scholar
  22. Merriam SB (2002) Introduction to qualitative research. In: Merriam SB et al (eds) Associates, qualitative research in practices: examples for discussion and analysis. Jossey-Bass A Wiley Company, San Francisco, CA, pp 3–17Google Scholar
  23. Myers DG (1996) Social psychology. The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., Holland, MIGoogle Scholar
  24. Noe FP, Hull RB, Wellman JD (1982) Normative response and norm activation among ORV users within a seashore environment. Leisure Sciences 5(2):127–141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Patton MQ (2001) Qualitative research & evaluation methods, 3rd edn. Sage Publications, Inc., Thousand Oaks, CAGoogle Scholar
  26. Portes A (1998) Social capital: its origins and applications in modern sociology. Annual Review of Sociology 24:1–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Pretty J, Ward H (2001) Social capital and the environment. World Development 29(2):209–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Putnam RD (1995a) Bowling alone: America’s declining social capital. Journal of Democracy 6(1):65–78CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Putnam RD (1995b) Tuning in, tuning out: the strange disappearance of social capital in America. Political Science and Politics 28(4):664–683CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Putnam RD (2000) Bowling alone: the collapse and revival of American community. Simon & Shuster, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  31. Rotolo T (1999) Trends in voluntary association participation. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 28(2):199–212CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Rousseau DM, Sitkin SB, Burt RS, Camerer C (1998) Introduction to special topic forum: not so different after all: a cross-discipline view of trust. The Academy of Management Review 23(3):393–404Google Scholar
  33. Schuett MA, Ostergren D (2003) Environmental concern and involvement of individuals in selected voluntary associations. Journal of Environmental Education 34(4):30–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Stokowski PA (1994) Leisure in society: a network structural perspective. Mansell Publishing Limited, Great BritainGoogle Scholar
  35. Stormann W (1993) The recreation profession, capital, and democracy. Leisure Sciences 15:49–66CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Strauss A, Corbin J (1998) Basics of qualitative research: techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory. Sage Publications, Inc., Thousand Oaks, CAGoogle Scholar
  37. Wellman B, Frank KA (2001) Network capital in a multilevel world: getting support from personal communities. In: Lin N, Cook K, Burt RS (eds) Social capital theory and research. Aldine de Gruyter, New York, pp 233–273Google Scholar
  38. Wheelan SA (1994) Group processes: a developmental perspective. Allyn and Bacon, Needham Heights, MAGoogle Scholar
  39. Wollebaek D, Selle P (2002) Does participation in voluntary associations contribute to social capital? The impact of intensity, scope, and type. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 31(1):32–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Tourism Research and Outreach, The University of MaineOronoUSA
  2. 2.School of Forest ResourcesThe University of MaineOronoUSA

Personalised recommendations