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The brave new world of forestry: designing a participatory strategy for successful community-based collaboration in Packwood, Washington

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(Research Project) M.R.M.
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The focus of this study is community-based forest management (CBFM) in Packwood, Washington. I employed participatory action research and grounded theory to address the challenge of designing a strategy for successful community-based collaboration to manage natural resources. My findings suggest that Packwood is in the formative stages of CBFM, with several local organizations exhibiting some characteristics of CBFM, but lacking a planned and coordinated strategy to sustain CBFM. Packwood’s current efforts have only been modestly successful in meeting the socio-economic, environmental and other needs of the community. Barriers to the success of these organizations include challenges associate with the perception of insiders and outsiders, power struggles, institutional barriers, and misinformation. These challenges could be addressed by implementing a participatory community strategy focused on increasing social capital. The newly formed Packwood Empowering Packwood Team is using this research to develop and implement such a strategy.
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