Assessing mechanisms for engagement in access management for public lands in southwestern Alberta
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AbstractThis Master’s Degree Project describes efforts to bridge the gap between existing research and proposed recreation access management for an area of public lands located in southwestern Alberta, Canada. The study area consisted of provincial public lands experiencing increased pressure from both recreational and industrial activities. At the time of writing, there was no comprehensive recreation access management plan for the area. An Internet-based survey was used to examine: how recreation users perceive recreation access management issues, and the acceptability and desirability of different public consultation processes to assist with recreation access management planning. Nine hundred and forty five people responded to the survey. Respondents were categorized into several different groupings for analysis, including: age, membership to an organized recreation use group, motorized/non-motorized recreation users, gender, length of time spent recreating in the area, and residence. Quantitative analysis through factor analysis and multiple analysis of variance indicated significant differences in opinions about what is currently happening on the landscape and the need for access management within all groupings except place of residence (‘large city’ vs. ‘other community’). Non-parametric tests indicated there were no significant differences in desirability of public consultation types between genders; however significant differences in desirability of public consultation types existed between all other groupings. Mechanisms for engagement in access management planning could be designed with the opinions and public consultation preferences of these groups in mind.
Bibliography: p. 126-137