The report summarizes the results of quantitative research which involved two statewide surveys of Oregonians about their attitudes toward forest management and sustainability issues. One survey used conventional techniques. The other used scaled comparison survey research, a technique which arrayed pairs of sustainable forest management goals to assess Oregonians’ relative priorities. The survey questions asked generally about forest management and sustainability issues, and specifically about federal and private forestlands. Although state forests were not singled out because of the added complexity, the survey results clearly encompass state forest management issues. Findings reveal shared concerns among Oregonians, including forest fire management, family-wage jobs and the future of natural-resource based economies in Oregon’s rural communities, and environmental quality concerns.
The first Oregon Values and Beliefs Study was conducted during the months of July and August of 1992. The study involved several thousand hours of face-to-face survey interviews of 1,361 Oregonians in each of the state’s 36 counties. Furthermore, the study divided Oregon into four regions (Tri County, Southern Oregon, Western Oregon [including Lane County, the balance of the Willamette Valley, and the Oregon Coast], and Eastern Oregon), so that additional analysis could be conducted within each region. The purpose of the study was to explore the underlying core values of Oregonians, gain understanding about those values where differences exist, enrich debate of policy issues by providing a clear understanding of core values and beliefs, allow for conclusions to be drawn regarding public sentiment on key issues confronting Oregon, and provide a scientifically sound benchmark of core values which may be periodically measured. Survey topics ranged from public issues of today to personal perceptions and beliefs. The study identified share core values among Oregonians, including the importance of family, the value of employment and the economic conditions which create employment, the value of education, and the appreciation of Oregon’s environmental features.