Spatial heterogeneity of willingness to pay for forest management

Abstract

The paper investigates the spatial heterogeneity of public’s preferences for the implementation of a new country-wide forest management and protection program in Poland. Spatial econometric methods and high resolution geographical information system data related to forest characteristics are used to explain the variation in individual-specific willingness to pay (WTP) values, derived from a discrete choice experiment study. We find that respondents’ WTP is higher the closer they live to their nearest forest, and the scarcer forests are in the area where they live. Interestingly, the higher the ecological value of forests in respondents’ area, the more people prefer extending areas of national forest protection. We also investigate spatial patterns in individual-specific WTP scores and in latent class membership probabilities, finding that preferences are indeed spatially clustered. We argue that this clustering should be taken into account in forest management and policy-making.

Publication
Environmental and Resource Economics, 68: 705-727
Danny Campbell
Danny Campbell
Professor of Economics

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