Richard C. Stedman

Richard C. Stedman
Cornell University | CU · Department of Natural Resources

PhD

About

253
Publications
110,921
Reads
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12,324
Citations
Additional affiliations
August 2007 - present
Cornell University
Position
  • Director, Human Dimensions Research Unit

Publications

Publications (253)
Article
In 2019, solar energy made up the largest share of new electricity-generating capacity in the U.S. This growth is increasingly driven by large “utility-scale” projects. Although data from public opinion polls indicate an overall high level of support for ‘solar energy’, generically framed, these polls rarely, if ever, consider the issue of scale of...
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Environmental management involves the complex interaction between identifying the causes of problems and implementing solutions. Our exploratory study draws on attribution theory to analyze the causal attributions among community members experiencing frequent and intensifying harmful algal blooms in a lake of western New York State. Our interviews...
Preprint
Understanding the transactions that occur between humans and their environments requires research focused on phenomena that explain behavioral patterns, particularly values that serve as guiding principles in life. Mounting evidence has suggested that pro-environmental behavior is motivated by the long-term goal of living a meaningful life, as refl...
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How scientists communicate can influence public viewpoints on invasive species. In the scientific literature , some invasion biologists adopt neutral language, while others use more loaded language, for example by emphasizing the devastating impacts of invasive species and outlining consequences for policy and practice. An evaluation of the use of...
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Insufficient funding is a major impediment to conservation efforts around the world. In the United States, a decline in hunting participation threatens sustainability of the “user‐pay, public benefit” model that has supported wildlife conservation for nearly 100 years, forcing wildlife management agencies to contemplate alternative funding strategi...
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Public support for natural areas and engagement in place-specific pro-environmental behaviors (PS-PEB) has predominantly focused on individuals’ relationships with and attachments to a specific place. However, recent discussions suggest that individuals’ general connection to nature is equally important in determining individuals’ willingness to en...
Article
Declining participation in hunting, especially among young adult hunters, affects the ability of state and federal agencies to achieve goals for wildlife management and decreases revenue for conservation. For wildlife agencies hoping to engage diverse audiences in hunter recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) efforts, university settings pro...
Article
In the United States, municipal governments play an essential role in creating plans, policies, and procedures that consider biodiversity. However, municipal leaders do not always have the knowledge or capacity to integrate conservation into land-use planning effectively. Habitats and natural areas that occur outside of protected areas are vulnerab...
Article
Solar photovoltaic facilities are cropping up with ever-increasing size and frequency. Often, these utility-scale projects incite opposition from local communities – once branded a “Not in my backyard” reaction. Here we conduct a cross-disciplinary review covering two interrelated topics: 1) solar siting analyses utilizing a geographical informatio...
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Smart grids use digital information technology to simultaneously increase energy efficiency while integrating renewables into the electric grid, making it a critical component of achieving a low-carbon energy system. Prior research on the social acceptance of smart grids has relied on either single time point assessment (i.e. prior to a smart grid...
Article
Coal power plant-based energy production has declined dramatically since 2011, leading to calls from some politicians for government subsidies to support unprofitable coal power plants. This study is the first to use a nationally representative sample to assess American public support for subsidizing coal power plants. We find moderate public oppos...
Article
en Framing has long been a central construct in scholarship on the role of rhetoric and discourse in the policy process. Research on policy framing and identity thus far has neglected the role of place‐based identity, focusing instead on identity constructs such as race, class, gender, and ethnicity. Through a mixed methods analysis of transcripts...
Chapter
In this chapter, we use website text from Virginia aquaculture companies, state tourism interests, and large conservation organizations to explore how aquaculture and oysters serve as loci for intimate relations with material place, social and ecological heritage, and organizational partners.
Article
Sea lampreys (Petromyzon marinus) invaded the Great Lakes in the early twentieth century and caused considerable economic and ecological harm. People who fished the Great Lakes suffered crippling losses and successfully lobbied elected officials in Canada and the United States to create a sea lamprey control program which the Great Lakes Fishery Co...
Article
We describe the presence of post-production cost clauses (PCCs) in shale gas leases in two Northeastern Pennsylvania counties. Using a large, random sample of leases (N=1031), we demonstrate (1) how common PCCs are, (2) how frequently landowners address the risks of these clauses directly in the lease, (3) and several factors associated with greate...
Article
Hunter education (HE) is offered in all 50 states, with oversight provided by state wildlife agencies (SWAs). The vast majority of HE courses are taught by volunteers. Recruiting and retaining volunteers to meet the demand for HE courses are growing concerns among SWAs. Insufficient information exists about volunteer instructors’ motivations, exper...
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Much research exists on how social-psychological factors (e.g. political ideology), proximity to development, and contextual factors (e.g. state in which one resides) drive public attitudes toward various types of energy development. Yet, scholars have only recently begun to explore how these factors interact to create unique geographies of percept...
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Little is known about the conservation of intermittent and ephemeral streams on private lands despite the importance of these waterways for ecosystem and hydrologic outcomes. Our case study of a watershed of central New York State considers landowners’ attitudes toward perennial and intermittent streams on their property. We combine social science...
Article
As federal, state, and local governments and agencies respond to calls to make decisions and implement programs according to tenets of 'good governance', a need exists to develop methods for systematically evaluating performance. 'Good governance' has been characterized as including a wide array of principles, which vary across literatures. Compara...
Article
The impacts of aquatic invasive species (AIS) on the recreational fishery in the Laurentian Great Lakes are of concern to managers and policy makers. Some AIS have the potential to depress sportfish populations, reducing recreational fishing opportunities and damaging local economies. Alternatives that could reduce the threat of AIS could be costly...
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Japanese wolves (Canis lupus hodophilax) became extinct in the early 1900s. Because the country is experiencing growth in populations of ungulates, the potential of reintroducing wolves to promote self-regulating biodiverse ecosystems has been discussed by various Japanese and international researchers. However, limited research exists regarding pu...
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Mail surveys have long been a staple of social science research. Properly conducted, they can gather representative data about a population that provides important generalizations about that population. High response rates are one crucial element of this capacity to make such generalizations. Response rates to mail surveys–especially those targetin...
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Record-breaking fire seasons are becoming increasingly common worldwide, and large wildfires are having extraordinary impacts on people and property, despite years of investments to support social–ecological resilience to wildfires. This has prompted new calls for land management and policy reforms as current land and fire management approaches hav...
Article
Collaborative watershed governance (CWG) is one strategy to address nonpoint source water pollution. While many collaborative watershed arrangements unfold in local settings, institutional analyses of CWG often do not consider landowners perceive intracommunity tensions about water pollution. We consider how diverse landowners attribute water pollu...
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Resilience has become a common goal for science-based natural resource management, particularly in the context of changing climate and disturbance regimes. Integrating varying perspectives and definitions of resilience is a complex and often unrecognized challenge to applying resilience concepts to social-ecological systems (SESs) management. Using...
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Through a social–ecological systems (SES) lens, this qualitative study investigates how place attachment is manifested among young Q’eqchi’ Maya women of Guatemala. Q’eqchi’ women have positive and negative feelings toward social and ecological attributes of their SES, conceptualized as “magnets” and “anchors.” This research was part of a larger pr...
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Civic engagement in environmental management is often seen as linked to sense of place, sometimes with an assumption—explicit or implicit—that strong place attachment promotes a deeper stewardship commitment. This study challenges this idea by arguing that stewardship can develop along different pathways depending on people’s place meanings. We inv...
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The last 25 years have witnessed growing recognition that natural resource management decisions depend as much on understanding humans and their social interactions as on understanding the interactions between non-human organisms and their environment. Decision science provides a framework for integrating ecological and social factors into a decisi...
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Place meanings—notions of what a given location is, and what it ought to be—are critical to the social negotiations that produce regulatory and management regimes. These in turn contribute to the material social-ecological outcomes that determine both the sustainability of system processes and the ways in which costs and benefits are distributed ac...
Article
We address the implications of a latent yet critical assumption in place research: that sense of place is chronically accessible in memory. It is presently assumed that sense of place is a consistently retrieved representation stored memory that is always at the “top of the mind”, with an automatic, inevitable, and robust effect on behavioral outco...
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This paper develops a theoretical argument for how place attachments are forged and become dynamically linked to increasingly common mobility practices. First, we argue that mobilities, rather than negating the importance of place, shift our understanding of place and the habitual ways we relate to and bond with places as distinct from a conception...
Preprint
Full-text available
This paper develops a theoretical argument for how place attachments are forged and become dynamically linked to increasingly common mobility practices. First, we argue that mobilities, rather than negating the importance of place, shift our understanding of place and the habitual ways we relate to and bond with places as distinct from a conception...
Article
Smart meters are a crucial infrastructural feature of a modernizing grid. Smart meters enable dynamic rate structures, a wide range of smart home technologies, energy use feedback, and greater use of distributed renewable energy. Yet, ratepayers are often unfamiliar with smart meters and their benefits, have ambivalent or negative attitudes toward...
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Youth development (YD) is receiving increased attention in environmental education (EE), yet faces critiques including lack of attention to cultural com-petency and structural barriers. We explore YD outcomes of the EE program "Women, Agroecology, and Leadership for Conservation, " which engages young Q'eqchi' Maya women in Guatemala in learning ab...
Article
It’s been just over a decade since Unconventional Oil and Gas development began in earnest in the Marcellus Shale, a dense shale formation that, along with the deeper and larger Utica Shale, covers much of the mid-Atlantic United States. Since January 2008, approximately 15,939 wells have been drilled and fracked at 5674 sites across these shales....
Article
Landowners who lease property for shale gas development (i.e., “fracking”) face the possibility of procedural disenfranchisement and risk. They also stand to benefit financially from bonus and royalty payments. This article evaluates the frequency with which these experiences occur and how they vary between landowners. Using a mixed‐methods approac...
Preprint
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Despite broad recognition of the value of social sciences and increasingly vocal calls for better engagement with the human element of conservation, the conservation social sciences remain misunderstood and underutilized in practice. The conservation social sciences can provide unique and important contributions to society's understanding of the re...
Preprint
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It has long been claimed that a better understanding of human or social dimensions of environmental issues will improve conservation. The social sciences are one important means through which researchers and practitioners can attain that better understanding. Yet, a lack of awareness of the scope and uncertainty about the purpose of the conservatio...
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Experimentation as a means of governance for sustainability transitions has been advocated for years by transition scholars and geography scholars. We propose that examining the impact of experimentation requires an understanding of its embeddedness in place as a socio-spatial context. This notion of embeddedness, which conceptually aligns well wit...
Preprint
Fishery management is increasingly moving toward management that accounts for environmental and social dimensions. Such an approach requires the integration of natural and social science information into planning and decision-making processes. The actual integration of social science information, however, remains limited in many policy and decision...
Preprint
Natural resource management agencies increasingly engage in monitoring and evaluation activities to become more explicit and transparent about their activities and to demonstrate management achievements. As fishery management focuses on fish resources and the people using these resources, evaluating management performance requires assessing both en...
Preprint
The Great Lakes are one of the most invaded aquatic ecosystems in the world, and the spread of fish pathogens and aquatic invasive species (AIS) has become a serious issue for fishery management in the Great Lakes. Our study applies the Drivers-Pressures-State-Impacts-Responses model (DPSIR) to identify social-ecological linkages in the spread of p...
Preprint
Fishery management is increasingly moving towards ecosystem-based approaches that integrate ecological and human dimensions of fisheries. Studies on the human dimensions (HD) of fisheries have increased in recent years. A gap, however, remains between the nature of available information and the information needed by fishery managers. Our paper addr...
Article
We comment on the recent comprehensive review “Barriers to enhanced and integrated climate change adaptation and mitigation in Canadian forest management” by Williamson and Nelson (2017, Can. J. For. Res.47: 1567–1576, doi:10.1139/cjfr-2017-0252). They employ the popular barriers analysis approach and present a synthesis highlighting the numerous b...
Article
Urban‐rural differences in environmental concern are the primary way that place has been conceptualized within the social bases of environmental concern framework, yet there has been little convergence in empirical findings to support such differences. We assess the influence of place of permanent residence and other sociodemographic measures of th...
Article
The spread of fish pathogens and aquatic invasive species (AIS) is an ongoing challenge in the Great Lakes region. Bait dealers can prevent the spread of fish pathogens and AIS through their business practices and by educating their customers. Little is known, however, about whether and how they fulfill these roles. Licensed bait dealers in the Gre...
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This study expands existing models of proenvironmental behavior (PEB) to examine the potentially important and interacting influences of nature-based recreation and sense of place on participation in conservation-oriented activities. We tested hypothesized relationships using a structural equation modeling approach that accounted for common behavio...
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The field of human-dimensions of wildlife management has traditionally not engaged in social-ecological system (SES) resilience thinking and adaptive management in a systematic way. This essay focuses on the resilience of mountain forest social-ecological systems in Japan by focusing on three interacting megafauna; sika deer (Cervus nippon), grey w...
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In decision-making on the politically-contentious issue of unconventional gas development, the UK Government and European Commission are attempting to learn from the US experience. Although economic, environmental, and health impacts and regulatory contexts have been compared cross-nationally, public perceptions and their antecedents have not. We c...
Article
Concern over the potential transfer of aquatic nuisance species (ANS) between the Great Lakes basin and the Upper Mississippi River basin has motivated calls to re-establish hydrologic separation between the two basins. Accomplishing that goal would require significant expenditures to re-engineer waterways in the Chicago, IL area. These costs shoul...
Article
Do facts lead to positive/negative views about energy development or vice versa? The answer matters crucially for policy and communication – if perceptions of what is true (beliefs) precede feelings (attitudes), additional information could shape views on an energy technology; yet, if attitudes precede beliefs, the usefulness of communication, eith...
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Over the past 40 years, the sense of place concept has been well-established across a range of applications and settings; however, most theoretical developments have " privileged the slow. " Evidence suggests that place attachments and place meanings are slow to evolve, sometimes not matching material or social reality (lag effects), and also tendi...
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Concerns within the conservation community about declining hunting participation and associated conservation consequences have catalyzed hunter recruitment and retention strategies targeting nontraditional hunting populations. One emerging group of interest includes individuals motived to eat food that is grown, raised, produced, or harvested local...
Article
How do people interpret ambiguous and uncertain events? This study explores this question in the context of unconventional oil and gas development, or “fracking”, with implications for natural resource extraction generally. Drawing on the theories of social representations and framing, we test the hypothesis that legacies of natural resource extrac...
Article
Anecdotal evidence suggests that adults lacking previous hunting experience and family support for hunting comprise a growing proportion of new hunters. Empirical evidence of such a trend is lacking. Furthermore, hunting motivations and constraints for these “nontraditional path hunters” (NTPHs) have not been well documented. We articulate a strate...
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To develop and apply goals for future sustainability, we must consider what people care about and what motivates them to engage in solving sustainability issues. Sense of place theory and methods provide a rich source of insights that, like the social-ecological systems perspective, assume an interconnected social and biophysical reality. However,...
Article
Reflexivity theory can contribute in important ways to our understanding of how societies contend with climate change. Avoiding the catastrophic effects of “dangerous climate change” will require substantial change, yet emissions continue to rise. Social scientific research on climate change mitigation is dominated by a relatively small number of m...
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Complex energy development, such as associated with extraction and processing of shale gas, may affect the future sustainability and resilience of the small, often rural communities where development occurs. A difficulty for understanding the connection between sustainability, resilience, and shale gas development (hereafter "SGD") is that definiti...
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When discussing the effects of resource extraction in rural communities, academics commonly focus on specific and concrete impacts that fall nicely into the categories of environmental, economic, and social – for example, effects on water quality, jobs, and roads. A less common way of conceptualising effects of extractive industries, but more akin...
Article
Research examining the relationship between trust, public engagement, and natural resource management asserts that trust fosters positive behavior and enhanced cooperation. Yet some scholars are finding that certain kinds of distrust are helpful in achieving democratic outcomes by providing would-be participants with the motivation to engage in iss...