Skip navigation
Skip navigation

Assessing and managing social impacts resulting from forest policy changes

Loxton, Edwina A M

Description

Changes in access to natural resources impact the people and communities reliant on those resources for their livelihood. Australia's Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs), signed between 1997 and 2001, aimed to rebalance the productive use and conservation of commercially valuable public native forests. They resulted in reduced access to these forests for wood production, along with other changes, and were accompanied by mitigation strategies intended to assist those most impacted to adjust to the...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorLoxton, Edwina A M
dc.date.accessioned2018-11-22T00:04:46Z
dc.date.available2018-11-22T00:04:46Z
dc.date.copyright2013
dc.identifier.otherb3120944
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/150049
dc.description.abstractChanges in access to natural resources impact the people and communities reliant on those resources for their livelihood. Australia's Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs), signed between 1997 and 2001, aimed to rebalance the productive use and conservation of commercially valuable public native forests. They resulted in reduced access to these forests for wood production, along with other changes, and were accompanied by mitigation strategies intended to assist those most impacted to adjust to the changes - particularly forestry businesses, their employees and rural communities. Despite the significance of the RFAs to Australian forest policy, little ex-post facto (after the fact) social impact assessment (SIA) has been conducted to monitor social impacts and evaluate the mitigation strategies. I conducted an ex-post facto SIA, investigating the social impacts experienced by members of the native forest industry in upper north-east New South Wales and south-west Western Australia as a consequence of RFAs and associated changes. While other groups were also affected, I focused on these groups due to the complexity of analysing social impacts and a focus on in-depth, rather than broad, analysis. I interviewed owners of, and workers employed by, forestry businesses affected by the RFAs; government employees responsible for industry management and regulation; and representatives from industry, community and environmental groups. I used an adaptive theory approach, encouraging an iterative process of data collection and analysis in conjunction with critical review and modification of current theory. Research findings are presented as four papers. The first two papers analyse the social impacts experienced by participants in the two case study regions. In each case, social impacts manifested both as a result of the policy negotiation process and the final outcomes of that process, beginning prior to the completion of the RFAs and evolving over time. Social impacts were experienced cumulatively, and included tangible (physical) and intangible (symbolic or psychological) elements. These results highlighted the multiple interacting factors that influenced how people experienced and responded to the RFAs and associated changes, including personal factors, the provision of mitigation strategies, and additional changes in the forest industry. The implications of the findings for SIA theory and practice are analysed in the third and fourth papers. The third explores the complex nature of cumulative social impacts that result from multiple policy processes and the influences of external factors and individuals' responses. It draws on results from the Western Australian case study to present a framework for the assessment and management of cumulative social impacts, adapted from a framework developed for the mining sector. The fourth paper evaluates the mitigation strategies implemented in the two case study regions, and identifies implications for designing, implementing and monitoring future mitigation strategies. These four papers contribute to understanding the complexity of social impacts and provide lessons for those involved in negotiating and introducing change, and assessing, managing and monitoring social impacts. Acknowledging this complexity and the consequent difficulty of predicting social impacts encourages ex-post facto SIA as a critical learning opportunity, the results of which contribute to SIA theory and practice.
dc.format.extentxi, 181 leaves.
dc.language.isoen_AU
dc.rightsAuthor retains copyright
dc.subject.lccSD243.L69 2013
dc.subject.lcshForests and forestry Social aspects Australia New South Wales
dc.subject.lcshForests and forestry Social aspects Australia Western Australia
dc.subject.lcshForest policy Social apects Australia New South Wales
dc.subject.lcshForest policy Social apects Australia Western Australia
dc.subject.lcshForestry and community Australia New South Wales
dc.subject.lcshForestry and community Australia Western Australia
dc.subject.lcshNew South Wales Rural conditions
dc.subject.lcshWestern Australia Rural conditions
dc.titleAssessing and managing social impacts resulting from forest policy changes
dc.typeThesis (PhD)
local.description.notesThesis (Ph.D.)--Australian National University
dc.date.issued2013
local.type.statusAccepted Version
local.contributor.affiliationAustralian National University
local.identifier.doi10.25911/5d612011e6946
dc.date.updated2018-11-20T04:12:19Z
dcterms.accessRightsOpen Access
local.mintdoimint
CollectionsOpen Access Theses

Download

File Description SizeFormat Image
b31209440-Loxton_E.pdf464.16 MBAdobe PDFThumbnail


Items in Open Research are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

Updated:  19 May 2020/ Responsible Officer:  University Librarian/ Page Contact:  Library Systems & Web Coordinator