Research Social Scientist
400 N 34th St., Suite 201
Contact Matthew Helmer
I am currently conducting research in conjunction with the Goods, Services, and Values team on elk hunters and the social values of hunting in the Starkey Experimental Forest. I am also working on human ecology mapping focusing on social values and ecosystem benefits in the Wenatchee-Okanogan National Forest. Just recently, I began a research project on heritage and cultural ecosystem services and am assisting on a project involving Forest Service outreach to Latino communities in the Portland metro area.
- Cultural heritage and public lands
- Sustainable recreation, tourism, and human-nature connections
- Environmental justice, public outreach, and equity of forest use
My past research projects have involved archaeological and cultural heritage work on ancient and modern fishing communities in coastal Peru. Important aspects of this work included the analysis of sociopolitical development and resource use, as well as community-based connections to archaeological heritage. I have also conducted cultural resource management research in the southeastern United States.
Why This Research is Important
Cultural connections to our public lands are critically important and are often overlooked when we think about recreation and our connections to nature. My work helps to promote cultural heritage on public lands and determine the best ways to deliver the Forest Service's rich cultural resources to the public. My research also assists in defining the various benefits that humans receive from the forest so that we can better represent the importance of human forest use and public land conservation.
- University of East Anglia (Norwich, UK), Ph.D. Anthropology 2015
- Louisiana State University, M.A. Anthropology 2011
- Louisiana State University, B.A. Anthropology 2009
- Blahna, Dale J.; Cerveny, Lee K.; Williams, Daniel R.; Kline, Jeffrey D.; Helmer, Matthew ; McCool, Stephen F.; Valenzuela, Francisco . 2020. Chapter 5: Rethinking outdoor recreation to account for the diversity of human experiences and connections to public lands.
- Cerveny, Lee K.; Sánchez, José J.; Helmer, Matthew ; Milnor, Adam . 2020. Chapter 8: Public lands, tourism, and community connections.
- Helmer, Matthew ; Miller, Anna B.; Barborak, James R.; McCool, Stephen F.; Leung, Yu-Fai . 2020. Chapter 9: Global dimensions: Trends, lessons, and collaborative learning.