Canadian Forest Service Publications

Characterizing the profiles, motivations and behaviour of Quebec's forest owners. 2015. Côté, M.-A.; Gilbert, D.; Nadeau, S. For. Pol. Econ. 59:83-90.

Year: 2015

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 36160

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.1016/j.forpol.2015.06.004

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In 2012, a survey was conducted of a random sample (n=2215) of the roughly 130,000 non-industrial private forest owners in the province of Quebec (Canada), to characterize their profiles, motivations and activities. This study follows similar surveys of the same population in 1973 and 1985. The results show that woodlot management activities are strongly integrated into respondents' lifestyles, although respondents' socio-economic characteristics have changed over the last 40 years. A majority of respondents own a woodlot that is located near their residence; have owned it for more than 20 years; visit it several times a year; use it to carry out complementary activities, mainly for enjoyment; and plan to transfer it the next generation, thus keeping it in the family. A majority of respondents view generating an income from forest activities as a secondary objective. For most of them, timber harvesting and hunting do not conflict with their desire to protect their natural environment. These results confirm the existing literature emphasizing the primacy of intrinsically individual factors such as personal or family values over external incentives in order to explain landowners' degree of involvement in forest management activities.

Plain Language Summary

The findings in this study confirm what is found in the literature, namely that the management of private woodlots in Quebec is strongly associated with individual factors such as family values rather than economic ones.

The objectives of this work were to characterize the profile, values and behaviour of private woodlot owners in 2012 and to identify trends and variations relative to similar studies conducted in 1973 and 1985.

The results show that the majority of respondents live close to their private woodlot, that they have owned it for more than 20 years, that they visit it several times a year, that they use it for complementary activities (mainly relaxation), and that they plan to bequeath it to their descendants. Most respondents consider the generation of additional income from their woodlot to be of secondary importance. For the most part, timber harvesting and hunting do not conflict with their desire to protect the natural environment.