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    Natural resource managers need up-to-date information about how people interact with public lands and the meanings these places hold for use in planning and decision-making. This case study explains the use of public participatory Geographic Information System (GIS) to generate and analyze spatial patterns of the uses and values people hold for the Browns Canyon National Monument in Colorado. Participants drew on maps and answered questions at both live community meetings and online sessions to develop a series of maps showing detailed responses to different types of resource uses and landscape values. Results can be disaggregated by interaction types, different meaningful values, respondent characteristics, seasonality, or frequency of visit. The study was a test for the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service, who jointly manage the monument as they prepare their land management plan. If the information generated is as helpful throughout the entire planning process as initial responses seem, this protocol could become a component of the Bureau’s planning tool kit.

    Publication Notes

    • Visit PNW's Publication Request Page to request a hard copy of this publication.
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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Harner, John; Cerveny, Lee; Gronewold, Rebecca. 2017. Participatory mapping in Browns Canyon National Monument, Colorado (USA). Case Studies in the Environment.


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    PPGIS, public engagement, resource planning, social science.

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