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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Sustainability in Parks and Protected Areas
by Thorn, Jamie, Ph.D., Prescott College, 2017, 224; 10277458
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this research was to explore the state of sustainability in U.S. Parks and Protected Areas (PPAs) as well as to create a tool to help measure and maintain sustainability in PPAs. The primary research question driving this research was “What is the current state of sustainability in U.S. PPAs?” This guiding question also addressed a sub-question, which asked, “Can a tool be developed and validated to measure the state of sustainability in parks?” The second research question in this project was “Do current park managers believe the use of a sustainable parks certificate would aid ongoing efforts to uphold and maintain sustainability in their parks?” Each research question was addressed through the creation of a survey to measure the state of sustainability through five hypothesized domains, with 55 Likert-scale-style questions and six open-ended questions addressing the certificate program. The survey opened in May 2017 and ended in October 2017. It was sent to approximately 2,645 managers across the country and included national parks and state parks in U.S. states and territories. The data showed that participants were in favor of creating a sustainable parks certificate to help them become more sustainable. A chief recommendation was to start an initiative aimed at providing an online platform for sustainability training geared specifically toward PPAs. This research project has begun the steps necessary to advance the state of sustainability in U.S. PPAs.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Mitten, Denise
Commitee: Ady, Janet, Bradley, Michael, Madison, Mark
School: Prescott College
Department: Education / Sustainability Education
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 78/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Environmental Studies, Sustainability, Environmental science, Recreation
Keywords: Environmental certification, Parks, Protected areas, Recreation, Sustainability, Tourism
Publication Number: 10277458
ISBN: 978-1-369-77801-4
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