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Vita Wright

Social Science Analyst and Science Applications Specialist

c/o Flathead National Forest
650 Wolfpack Way
Kalispell, MT 59901
Contact Vita Wright

Current Research

Individual and organizational influences on the success of science delivery, and on the use of science by fire managers in the USFS, NPS, and BLM. This draws from theories on human behavior, communication, and organizational culture and management.

Research Interests

Understanding the capacity for managers to access and use research, Organizational communication, learning, and innovation in the context of public land management, Organizational effectiveness of wildland fire management


  • University of Montana, Ph.D., Organizational Culture, Innovation & Communication, Technology Transfer, Human Dimensions of Natural Resource Management, 2015
  • University of Montana, M.S., Organismal Biology and Ecology - Multi-scale study of avian habitat use, 1996
  • University of Montana, B.S., Wildlife Biology, 1992
  • Professional Experience

    Science Application Specialist / Social Science Analyst, Rocky Mountain Research Station
    2009 to present

    Research Application Specialist, Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute
    1998 to 2009

    Research Assistant, USGS, Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center, Glacier National Park

    Wildlife Biologist, Bitterroot National Forest

    Teaching/Research Assistant, University of Montana
    1994 to 1995

    Wildlife Biologist, Umatilla National Forest, Heppner Ranger District
    1992 to 1993

    Wildlife Biologist Trainee, PNW Research Station & Siuslaw NF, Alsea RD
    1990 to 1991

    Biological Technician, Shasta-Trinity National Forest, Big Bar RD; Pacific Northwest Research Station
    1988 to 1990

    Volunteer Research Assistant, Glacier National Park
    1986 to 1988


    Wright, Vita; Thode, Andrea; Mottek-Lucas, Anne; Fallon, Jacklynn; , 2012. A social network approach to understanding science communication among fire professionals (Abstract)
    Wright, Vita; Kolden, Crystal; Kipfer, Todd; Lee, Kristine; Leighton, Adrian; Riddering, Jim; Schelvan, Leana, 2011. Enhancing fire science exchange: The Joint Fire Science Program's National Network of Knowledge Exchange Consortia

    National Strategic Program Areas: 
    Wildland Fire and Fuels
    National Priority Research Areas: 
    Forest Disturbances; Localized Needs (regional work)