Landscape perceptions and natural resource management: Finding the 'social' in the 'sciences'
AuthorToupal, Rebecca Stuart
AdvisorGimblett, H. Randall
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractMulti-cultural demands of public lands in the United States continue to challenge federal land managers to address social and cultural concerns in their planning efforts. Specifically, these individuals lack adequate knowledge of cultural concerns as well as a consistent strategy for acquiring that knowledge for use in decision-making. Current federal approaches to cultural concerns include public participation, conservation partnerships, government-to-government consultations with American Indian tribes, cultural resource inventories, and landscape analysis. Since cultural knowledge arises from human-nature relationships and shared perceptions of natural environments, and landscapes are the ultimate expression of such knowledge, an exploratory methodology was developed for a different approach to understanding cultural concerns through landscape perceptions. Using cultural landscape theories and applications from the natural and social sciences, this study examined the landscape perceptions of four groups concerned with management planning of the Baboquivari Wilderness Area in southern Arizona: the Bureau of Land Management, landowners of the Altar Valley, recreationists, and members of the Tohono O'odham Nation. The methodology is based on a human nature relationships rather than cultural aspects or features. It takes a holistic approach that differs from other perception studies by including: emic aspects of data collection and analysis; a spatial component: triangulation of data collection through narrative and graphic descriptions; conducting ethnographic, on-site interviews; and consensus analysis and small-sample theory. The results include: verification of four cultural groups; two levels of consensus---in the population of concern, and in each group---that overlap in some aspects of landscape perception; descriptions of four cultural landscapes that illustrate similarities and differences among the groups, and include patterns and representations of spatial relationships; an effective methodology for revealing cultural concerns that are not identified through public forums, and with potential for application by agencies at the field office level.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Renewable Natural Resources