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Private Forest Owner Typologies in Slovenia and Serbia: Targeting Private Forest Owner Groups for Policy Implementation

Abstract

Forestry decision-makers in Slovenia and Serbia share common objectives: development of a more coherent policy for private forests and involvement of different ownership groups in policy deliberation and development, as well as increased management levels in private forests that are currently below their productive potential. Successful achievement of these objectives in both countries requires a range of policy tools. The research objective of this study was to identify and describe private forest owner types in Slovenia and Serbia based on various criteria (forest management objectives; participation in private forest owner associations; cooperation with other private forest owners and the public forest administration; performing forest harvesting activities) and to suggest a combination of policy instruments to target each private forest owner group. Surveys were conducted in Slovenia (n = 322) and Serbia (n = 248) on random samples of private forest owners. Survey data were analysed using a two-step cluster analysis. Four groups of private forest owners were identified in Slovenia: active (26.1 %), passive (33.2 %), multiobjective (18.6 %) and uninterested (22.0 %). Two were identified in Serbia: active (32.6 %) and multiobjective (67.4 % ). Existing policy instruments referring to private forests in Slovenia and Serbia are rather similar and formulated in the respective forest policy documents at the national level. However, there are no policy instruments in either country targeting specific private forest owner groups. Based on smart regulation as a specific conceptual approach, an appropriate mix of policy instruments is proposed, which includes various measures designed to target the identified private forest owner types.

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Fig. 1

Notes

  1. 1.

    Private forest owners are “individuals and families who combine forestry with agriculture (farm forests), those who live in or near their forest holdings, and those who live elsewhere (absentee owners)” (Schmithusen and Hirsch 2010).

  2. 2.

    These projects were the FAO project FAO/TCP/YUG/2902(A) “Institutional Development and Capacity building for the National Forest Program” and the FAO project GCP/FRY/003/FIN “Forest SectorDevelopment in Serbia”.

  3. 3.

    More detail is provided in Van Gossum et al. (2012).

  4. 4.

    Strata for Serbia were: (1) up to 0.99 ha; (2) from 1 to 4.99 ha; (3) from 5 to 9.99; (4) from 10 to 19.99 ha; (5) more than 20 ha. Strata for Slovenia were: (1) up to 0.99 ha; (2) from 1 to 4.99 ha; (3) from 5 to 9.99; (4) from 10 to 20.99 ha; (5) more than 30 ha.

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Acknowledgments

This study was conducted within the project “Sustainable management of the overall potential of forests in the Republic of Serbia” (No. 37008-TR), funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological development.

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Correspondence to Špela Pezdevšek Malovrh.

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Malovrh, Š.P., Nonić, D., Glavonjić, P. et al. Private Forest Owner Typologies in Slovenia and Serbia: Targeting Private Forest Owner Groups for Policy Implementation. Small-scale Forestry 14, 423–440 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11842-015-9296-8

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Keywords

  • Private forestry
  • Forest owner typology
  • Policy instruments
  • Policy implications
  • Smart regulation