Date of Award


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental and Energy Policy (MS)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Social Sciences


Audrey Lorraine Mayer


Non-industrial private forest (NIPF) owners hold the largest amount of privately owned forest in the United States. Activities undertaken by NIPF owners have the potential to drastically impact the forested landscape of the United States, along with its associated biodiversity and ecological services. Many government sanctioned programs are in place to discourage the conversion of forest to other uses as well as to ensure sustainable management and a continuous supply of timber. Reaching NIPF owners with information about these programs and other management information is therefore important to the forests of the United States.

This thesis presents research on how the NIPF owners of the western Upper Peninsula of Michigan communicate about forest management with neighboring NIPF owners. The data were obtained from 34 telephone interviews with owners of NIPF properties in the western Upper Peninsula. The goal of this research was to understand the way information moves through NIPF owner dominated landscapes in order to provide recommendations to policy implementers on how to best reach NIPF owners with information. Understanding where NIPF owners get information about management and landowner assistance programs is vital to ensuring a sustainably managed forest landscape in the western Upper Peninsula of Michigan.