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  • Author: Alessandro Paletto x
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The influence of common property rights on forest management policy: a case study in Sardinia region, Italy

Abstract

The property rights and the type of ownership (private owners, public domain and commons) are two fundamental concepts in relationship to the local development and to the social and environmental sustainability. Common forests were established in Europe since the Middle Ages, but over the centuries the importance of commons changed in parallel with economic and social changes. In recent decades, the scientific debate focused on the forest management efficiency and sustainability of this type of ownership in comparison to the public and private property. In Italy common forests have a long tradition with substantial differences in the result of historical evolution in various regions. In Sardinia region the private forests are 377.297 ha, the public forests are 201.324 ha, while around 120.000 ha are commons. The respect of the common rights changed in the different historical periods. Today, the common lands are managed directly by municipalities or indirectly through third parties, in both cases the involvement of members of community is very low. The main objective of the paper is to analyse forest management differences in public institutions with and without common property rights. To achieve the objective of the research the forest management preferences of community members and managers were evaluated and compared. The analysis was realized through the use of the principal-agent model and it has been tested in a case study in Sardinia region (Arci-Grighine district). The analysis of the results showed that the categories of actors considered (members of community, municipalities and managers) have a marked productive profile, but municipalities manage forests perceiving a moderate multifunctionality. Moreover, the representatives of the municipalities pay more attention to the interests of the collectivity in comparison to the external managers. They also attribute high importance to environmental and social forest functions.

Open access
Power of Forest Stakeholders in the Participatory Decision Making Process: A Case Study in Northern Italy

Abstract

In European countries, current forest use aims to enhance goods and services supplied by forest ecosystems, taking into account the multiple needs and interests of society through a participatory process. A successful participatory process requires a thorough analysis of stakeholders’ perceptions and preferences. The aim of this paper is to investigate the differences between stakeholders’ perceived influence and real power in forest management. A questionnaire survey was carried out among 51 forest stakeholders in a case study in the Italian Alps. Perceived influence was measured by asking stakeholders to rate on a 5-point scale the extent to which they can influence forest management issues. Real power was analyzed using social network analysis (SNA), investigating the relationships that stakeholders have with each other in the network. Real power was measured using a Freeman’s degree centrality measure, which focuses on the direct ties coming in and out for each stakeholder. The results show that public administration is the category of stakeholders with the most power in all forest management issues, while the actors of the tourism sector are in a marginal position. In addition, the results of the study suggest that in many cases stakeholders have a distorted perception of their own power.

Open access
Biomass allocation in natural regeneration of Fagus sylvatica and Picea abies trees in Italian Alps

Abstract

Biomass allocation in seedlings and saplings at different stages of growth is important information for studying the response of species to site conditions. The objectives of the paper are: (a) to analyse the relationship between height and biomass in young Norway spruce and European beech trees, (b) to study the influence of the leaf area on ontogenetic growth stages and biomass sequestration capacity on the regeneration of these two species. 96 seedlings (H < 30 cm) and saplings (31 < H < 130 cm) were collected in different light conditions in a case study in the Alps (Trentino province, Italy). Leaf Area Index and shoot/root ratio were used as indicators of the ecological conditions (e.g. light, soil moisture, nutrient status) able to influence the seedlings and saplings growth. Two non-linear regressions were fitted to analyse the relationship between height and biomass and to develop the aboveground and below-ground allometric equations. Non-linear regressions show that sapling or seedling height is a good predictor of above-ground and below-ground biomass with a R2 aj above 0.8 for all equations and a R2 aj above 0.9 for above-ground biomass of Norway spruce. The results show that silvicultural practices may influence the regeneration patterns and increase the biomass allocation rate influencing stand density and canopy cover.

Open access
Stakeholder analysis in the biomass energy development based on the experts’ opinions: the example of Triglav National Park in Slovenia

Abstract

The paper presents a method for identifying and classifying local stakeholders involved in renewable energy development. The method is based on the expert assessment and comprises three main steps: (1) identification of the independent experts considering their expertise and knowledge of the local context; (2) identification of the local stakeholders based on expert assessment; and (3) analytical categorisation of stakeholders taking into account the professional relationship network. Using forest biomass (bioenergy) production as example, the stakeholder analysis is illustrated on the case study of Triglav National Park, which is characterised by a high potential of woody biomass production and a large number of stakeholders involved in land use and management. The first stage of stakeholder analysis identifies the key stakeholders to be involved in bioenergy development, through a survey with local experts. The results highlight eight key stakeholders and several primary and secondary stakeholders that should be involved to ensure socially acceptable decision-making about the renewable energy development in the Triglav National Park.

Open access