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Forest commons in boreal Sweden

influences on forest condition, management and the local economy

Holmgren, Eva (2006). Forest commons in boreal Sweden. Umeå : Sveriges lantbruksuniv. , Rapport / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för skoglig resurshushållning och geomatik, 1401-0070 ; 18
ISBN 91-576-6893-0
[Licentiate thesis]

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This thesis examines the influences of Swedish forest commons on forest condition, management and the local economy. The approach is rationalistic, i.e. outcomes of forestry activities are assessed in relation to aims. According to the stated objectives, forest commons should serve as exemplars for improved forest management, focusing on increased and sustained timber production. They should provide sustainable economic support for farmers and the local economy, providing a sound basis for taxation and helping to secure the continued existence of the independent farming community. The aims of this thesis were: (i) to compare, regionally, the state of forests under common and other types of ownership; (ii) to compare forest common shareholders with non-shareholders with respect to the harvesting intensity and related business activities on their individually managed forest properties, including consideration of taxes paid to the local municipality; and (iii) to discuss research findings regarding the extent to which the aims of the Swedish forest commons (and, in a broader context, of forest common property regimes) have been fulfilled. In the first study, the state of the forests comprising all 33 forest commons were assessed, using National Forest Inventory data, and compared to other forests within the same municipalities. A second survey was conducted in the form of a case study with data from a single municipality relating to: forestry production parameters, sales revenues, operating costs and investments, disposable income and local municipal tax revenues. Results highlighted examples where the original aims of the forest commons have been realized to only a limited extent. For instance, the state of the forests in Norrbotten and Västerbotten revealed a comparatively restrictive harvesting policy. Results from the case study showed that shareholders’ land was less intensively managed than non-shareholders’ land. Both harvesting quotas and sales accounts confirmed this general finding. Shareholders also contributed less to the local economy through taxes. Since there were no indications that the potential to undertake forestry activities substantially differed between the different types of owners and property regimes, the differences in management intensity seem to be at least partially due to differences between the institutional frameworks in which they operate. The results clearly suggest that it is important to match a property regime with the owners’ aims for their properties. It is possible that the Swedish forest commons fulfil aims other than those studied, e.g. enhancing local well-being, providing ecological or amenity services, or promoting synergies between primary production and other rural activities, but these aspects require further investigation.

Authors/Creators:Holmgren, Eva
Title:Forest commons in boreal Sweden
Subtitle:influences on forest condition, management and the local economy
Series Name/Journal:Rapport / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för skoglig resurshushållning och geomatik
Year of publishing :May 2006
Number of Pages:29
ALLI. Holmgren, E. Lidestav, G. and Kempe, G. 2004. Forest Condition and Management in Swedish Forest Commons.Small-scale Forest Economics, Management and Policy 3:3 2004. II. Holmgren, E. Holmgren, L. and Lidestav, G. Comparison of Harvesting and Business Activities of Non-shareholders and Shareholders in a Forest Common in Västerbotten, Sweden (submitted manuscript).
Place of Publication:Umeå
ISBN for printed version:91-576-6893-0
Publication Type:Licentiate thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agris subject categories.:K Forestry > K10 Forestry production
E Economics, development, and rural sociology > E20 Organization, administration and management of agricultural enterprises or farms
Subjects:Not in use, please see Agris categories
Agrovoc terms:communal forests, common lands, rural conditions, agricultural economics, forestry production, forest surveys, forest management, boreal forests, sweden
Keywords:Swedish forestry, forest resources management, community managed forests, Swedish forest commons
Permanent URL:
ID Code:1131
Department:(S) > Dept. of Forest Resource Management
(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Forest Resource Management
Deposited By: Eva Holmgren
Deposited On:22 May 2006 00:00
Metadata Last Modified:02 Dec 2014 10:09

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