This month has been the busiest of my academic career. I am planning to submit my PhD thesis at the end of June and I am creating a poster for the New Zealand Institute of Forestry Conference in early July. The two tasks are very different as my thesis is around 50,000 words while the poster should have less than 500 words. Trying to switch from writing my thesis and making sure everything is covered to trying to explain my research with a few paragraphs of text and some key charts is challenging. For the poster, I decided to focus on just one small part of my research, the key factors that affect the reservation price of forest landowners.
The estimation of afforestation reservation prices for small landowners in New Zealand has not been the subject of much research despite its importance in helping predict future land use. Reservation prices for planting represent the minimum payment a landowner must receive before converting land from agriculture to forest. In this study, reservation price strategies were investigated using hypothetical annual and one-time payments for converting land from agriculture to forestry for 728 landowners with 20 to 200 hectares of forest and another agricultural enterprise. The survey asked landowners about their current forest land, ownership objectives, silviculture and reservation prices.
Landowners were asked to select the lowest payment they would accept from a list of eight payments. The average one-time payment a landowner would be willing to accept to convert a hectare of land from agriculture to forestry was $3,554 and the average annual payment to convert a hectare of land was $360.
The final reservation price model included five variables: payment amount, whether a landowner lives on the property, primary agricultural enterprise, landowner’s interest in carbon credits and total household income. I will post the entire poster once it is finished but here is my favourite infographic that my amazing husband at Cloudworks Media created.