Land management is a complex process which involves the interaction of biophysical and social variables. New demands are being placed on biophysical researchers working in land management to communicate more effectively with the public and to involve the public in the research process. The catalysts for change in the practice of land management research are clearly outlined with respect to pressures from new government policies, from institutions funding research, from communities in which the research is occurring and from within the academic environment itself. In order to meet these new demands, collaborative efforts – incorporating different academic disciplines and between researchers and communities – must occur. Traditional scientific approaches can benefit from the incorporation of techniques and approaches used within participatory research. The concept of participation and its relevance to biophysical research in land management is discussed, as well as the key characteristics of participatory research. Examples, predominantly from Australia, are provided; however the global scope of the changes is highlighted.
The Environmentalist – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 15, 2004
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