Using Schwartz Values to Assess Stakeholder Relations in the Coigach-Assynt Living Landscape
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Burgener, Ariana Jude
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This dissertation explores stakeholder relations in an environmental management case study from Northwest Scotland that has aimed to employ the Ecosystem Approach in their methods. The Coigach-Assynt Living Landscape (CALL) project was established to reforest an area of Scotland with the partnership of local community groups. A survey using Schwartz’s Theory of Basic Values was developed to assess project partner and community member priorities and preferences in regard to project activities, and the underlying values which shape these stances. Based on these findings, areas of potential conflict and cooperation were identified, and reasons for these relationships explored. Project partners were found share a high level of agreement over many priorities and values. Partners and community members shared some of the same priorities and values, particularly the view that Universalism, Benevolence and Security should be the most important values guiding CALL. Significantly, the two stakeholder groups differed in their regard of outreach events and the values of Conformity and Self-direction. Community members believed CALL management should place a higher importance on conformity – the value of obedience and behaving properly, while project partners believed higher importance should be placed on Self-Direction – the value of independence and creativity. These dissimilarities signify that some in the community feel ignored and do not trust or see CALL a legitimate power. In order to rectify this, it is recommended that CALL increase avenues of communication, negotiation and feedback.