US Forest Service Research & Development
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  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Paige Fischer

Paige Fischer

Research Social Scientist
Corvallis Forestry Sciences Lab
3200 SW Jefferson Way
United States

Phone: 541-758-7793
Contact Paige Fischer

Current Research

Paige Fischer is a research social scientist with the US Forest Service's Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment Center. She conducts research on the human dimensions of environmental problems affecting forests and rangelands in the U.S. West. Paige is also courtesy faculty member in the Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society at Oregon State University in Corvallis.

Paige's research focuses on how people perceive and respond to ecological risks such as biodiversity loss, wildfire and climate change. She is particularly interested in what motivates landowners and natural resource organizations to cooperate across geographic and social boundaries to address common ecological problems.

One of Paige's current research areas is about informal social networks through which individuals and organizations communicate about natural resource problems, and the implications of social network structure for human adaptation to environmental risks and changes. For example, are diverse networks more likely to give rise to innovative approaches to solving natural resource problems than homogeneous networks? In one of her current studies she is investigating the extent to which natural resource agencies and organizations that work on different issues in different areas in Central Oregon are communicating and interacting, thereby creating the opportunity to generate new knowledge and coordinate management of complex ecological processes such as wildfire on the larger landscape.

Research Interests

Paige's current research interests include:

· Private landowners' perceptions and management practices regarding wildland fire risks

· Private landowners' perceptions and management practices regarding invasive plant risks

· Barriers and opportunities for cross-boundary cooperation on landscape-scale management issues such as wildfire and invasive plants and biodiversity

· Social networks for the communication of science among researchers and practictioners in the field of fire and aquatic ecosystems

· Social networks for adaptation to fire risk

· Climate change adaptation among private landowners and rural communities

Why This Research is Important

Paige's research informs policies and strategies for addressing social dimensions of natural resource problems and fostering social and cultural aspects of mitigation and adatpation to environmental risks.


  • Oregon State University, Ph.D. Forest Resources (social science) 2007
  • Oregon State University , M.S. Forest Resources (social science) 2003
  • Hampshire College, B.A. Cultural anthropology 1994

Professional Experience

  • Research Social Scientist, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station
    2009 - Current
  • Research Associate , Department of Forest Resources, Oregon State University
    2007 - 2008
  • Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Forest Resources, Oregon State University
    2001 - 2006
  • Program Director, Pacific Environment
    1996 - 2001

Professional Organizations

  • Society and Natural Resources, Member (2001 - Current)
  • Society of American Foresters, Member (2001 - Current)

Awards & Recognition

  • National Science Foundation Coupled Human and Natural Systems Fellowship , 2012
    To assist outstanding junior scholars in attending the 2012 Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU),
  • Science Findings Award, 2012
    To provide content for PNW Science Findings and reward excellent research
  • Alumnus of the Year award, 2011
    For making outstanding contributions to the profession and programs of the College of Forestry, Oregon State University.
  • Ford Foundation Community Forestry Research Fellowship, 2004
    To support PhD research
  • Starker Fellowship in Private and Family Forestry, 2001
    To support 5-year graduate research assistantship
  • Fulbright Scholarship, 1994
    To support 18 months of anthropological field research in Sri Lanka

Featured Publications & Products


Research Highlights


Majority of surveyed family forest owners in eastern Oregon treat land to reduce wildfire risk

This study identified the different types of landowners who might benefit from policies and programs for wildfire risk reduction. It also reveal ...


Private Landowner Efforts to Mitigate Invasive Plants Linked to Threat Awareness

Scientists with the Pacific Northwest Research Station investigated perception of risk among nonindustrial private forest owners in Oregon's pon ...


Last updated on : 09/12/2016