New ideas for teaching natural resource management: From the long-term realities of national forest management
AbstractResearch and study of 90 years of managing multiple uses on national forests has revealed three new ideas or understandings about the nature of forest management (Fedkiw 1997a). The first idea is a new definition that describes the task of forest management and the role of forest managers. The second emphasizes the critical, continuous role of the learning experience that accompanies resource management and its relationship to both the adaptive and holistic ecological approaches to resource management. The third establishes that forest management has been on a pathway toward a holistic ecological approach from the beginning of American forestry. It also describes how forest management advanced, and continues to advance, incrementally and adaptively on that pathway in response to intensifying and diversifying uses and services; improving experience, technology, and science; changing markets and social preferences, and Nature's unexpected responses to use and management and her own random vagaries. These ideas have a large potential fro improving the knowledge, teaching, communication, and progress of forest management in the classroom, in the field, and with the general public and its interest groups. To be effective, however, these ideas must be communicated, discussed, debated, researched, tested, refined, and written about, not only among resource professionals but also with students, interest groups, stakeholders, landowners, policymakers, and the public-at-large. New ideas tend to roll off like water off a duck's back unless they are communicated, discussed, and debated; highlighted in their newness; packaged in a familiar context, and presented in a user/audience friendly way with graphic images (Perry 1993).