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Research Highlights

Individual Highlight

Community Environmentalism

Photo of Snapshot : Findings suggest that ethnically diverse publics may find motivation for environmentalism through a commitment to social action that serves their respective communities. In an increasingly diverse society this work reveals the value of understanding varying motivations and satisfactions in caring for the natural environment.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Winter, Patricia L.  
Research Station : Pacific Southwest Research Station (PSW)
Year : 2011
Highlight ID : 354


Diverse ethnic and racial groups are demonstrated as holding a commitment to environmentalism as a social action that serves their respective communities. A focus on urban publics improves our understanding of motivations for engagement in caring for natural resources for groups and aims at improving the cultural competence of engagement and education approaches. Through application of a unique qualitative approach (conceptual cognitive content mapping) participants were able to reveal their own perceptions of community and environmentalism, as well as how the two are intertwined. Environmentally responsible action is shown in the context of response to a social issue that impacts diverse urban communities. Community serves as a social unit that can motivate action and binds members of a group together. Effective engagement of diverse publics in dialogue about natural resources as well as direct involvement through caring may be more effective when linked to values surrounding community attachments.

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

  • Benjamin Marcus, M.A. and Allen Omoto Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA