Human-Environment Interactions

Volume 1 of the series Human-Environment Interactions pp 141-163


Public-Private Interactions in the Conservation of Private Forests in the United States

  • Tatyana B. RusevaAffiliated withDepartment of Government & Justice Studies, Appalachian State University Email author 
  • , Burnell C. FischerAffiliated withSchool of Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University–Bloomington

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This chapter discusses the investment decisions of private and public actors in the USA regarding the management and conservation of private forests. Managed by nearly 11 million private owners, these forestlands provide valuable ecological, economic, and social benefits to society. What happens on these lands as a result of public and private investment decisions has implications for society, both in the present and in the future. First, this chapter reviews the interactions between private and public actors in private forestry. A typology is proposed that characterizes public and private investments in forestlands based on their target audiences (e.g., a private investment decision for largely public benefit). This chapter next explores the different ownership features and uses of forests over time and space. The discussion centers on the challenges and opportunities of governing private forests as a bundle of property rights within the proposed typology of public-private interactions in private forestry.