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A Research Strategy to Ignite the Science of Outdoor Recreation on Public Lands

Anna B. Miller, Lee K. Cerveny, Monika M. Derrien, Steven Selin, Dale J. Blahna


To respond to changing demands for outdoor experiences on public lands, managers and researchers specializing in outdoor recreation and tourism are calling for a shift in the way we think about, study, and manage recreation. New and updated conceptual frameworks and management tools are needed to guide agency decision-makers as they face complex and dynamic outdoor recreation management challenges. This article introduces a research strategy that seeks to align management needs with actionable research on sustainable recreation and tourism. We describe eight Research Focus Areas (RFAs) proposed in the strategy. These RFAs were identified and developed through a collaborative process involving researchers and practitioners from government, academia, industry, and non-profit sectors. We emphasize the importance of interdisciplinary, interagency collaboration to solve modern challenges in outdoor recreation management from the site to landscape scale. 

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Outdoor recreation; tourism; management; public lands; social-ecological systems

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