Lee K. Cerveny

Pacific Northwest Research Station (USDA Forest Service)
Goods, Services and Values Program

400 N. 34th Street, Suite 201
Seattle, WA
lcerveny@fs.fed.us |  Visit Personal Website

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My research broadly encompasses the areas of natural resources governance, environmental policy, and the role of science in policy and planning. Previous work explores the interaction between resource managers and scientists in a public land management agency. Current work delves into (a) the emerging role of partnerships and multi-lateral institutions in public lands management; and (b) the use of science and social science in agency planning and NEPA assessments.

Seekamp, E., and L.K. Cerveny. 2011. "Conceptualizing Partnerships in the U.S. Forest Service: Using Multidimensional Scaling to Understand Partner-Agency Relations." Environmental Management. 48 (3): 615-30.
Abstract: Federal land management agencies, such as the USDA Forest Service, have expanded the role of recreation partners reflecting constrained growth in appropriations and broader societal trends towards civic environmental governance. Partnerships with individual volunteers, service groups, commercial outfitters, and other government agencies provide the USDA Forest Service with the resources necessary to complete projects and meet goals under fiscal constraints. Existing partnership typologies typically focus on collaborative or strategic alliances and highlight organizational dimensions (e.g., structure and process) defined by researchers. This paper presents a partner typology constructed from USDA Forest Service partnership practitioners? conceptualizations of 35 common partner types. Multidimensional scaling of data from unconstrained pile sorts identified 3 distinct cultural dimensions of recreation partners?specifically, partnership character, partner impact, and partner motivations?that represent institutional, individual, and socio-culturalrncognitive domains. A hierarchical agglomerative cluster analysis provides further insight into the various domains of agency personnel?s conceptualizations. While three dimensions with high reliability (RSQ = 0.83) and corresponding hierarchical clusters illustrate commonality between agency personnel?s partnership suppositions, this study also reveals variance in personnel?s familiarity and affinity for specific partnership types. This real-world perspective on partner types highlights that agency practitioners not only make strategic choices when selecting and cultivating partnerships to accomplish critical task, but also elect to work with partners for the primary purpose of providing public service and fostering land stewardship.
DOI: 10.1007/s00267-011-9695-3
Cerveny, L.C., D. J. Blahna, M. J. Stern, M. J. Mortimer, A. Predmore, and J. Freeman. 2011. "The Use of Recreation Planning Tools in Forest Service NEPA assessments." Environmental Management, 48 (3): 644-57.
Abstract: U.S. Forest Service managers are required to incorporate social and biophysical science information in planning and environmental analysis. The use of science is mandated by the National Environmental Policy Act, the National Forest Management Act, and Forest Service planning rules. Despite the agency?s emphasis on ?science-based? decision-making, little is known about how science is actually used in recreation planning and management. This study investigated the perceptions of Forest Service interdisciplinary (ID) team leaders for 106 NEPA projects dealing with recreation and travel management conducted between 2005 and 2008. Our survey data show how managers rate the importance of social and biophysical science compared to other potential ?success factors? in NEPA assessments. We also explore how team leaders value and use multi-disciplinary tools for recreation-related assessments. Results suggest that managers incorporate a wide variety of recreation planning tools in recreation-related NEPA projects, but there appears to be no common understanding or approach for how or when these tools are incorporated. The Recreation Opportunity Spectrum (ROS) was found to be the most frequently used planning tool, but the Visitor Experience and Resource Protection (VERP) framework was the most consistently valued by those who used it in the NEPA assessment. We recommend future development of recreation planning tools and discuss how to better link science and procedural needs to the process of selecting appropriate planning tools.
DOI: 10.1007/s00267-011-9701-9
Ryan, Clare M., and Lee K. Cerveny. 2010. "Science Exchange in an Era of Diminished Agency Capacity: Recreation Management in the U.S. Forest Service." The American Review of Public Administration 40 (5): 593-616.
Abstract: Promotion of effective science exchange between government scientists and managers requires thoughtful arrangement and operation of research and management functions. The U.S. Forest Service was established at the peak of the Progressive Era, when science exchange was designed to occur between researchers and resource managers who worked in distinct arms of the agency,rnbut shared similar goals of effective forest management. In this article, the authors explore the implications of diminished agency capacity for science exchange interactions between researchers and managers in recreation management. Managers and researchers identified their current interactions, their perceptions of ideal interactions, and barriers to achieving those deals. Reduction in agency capacity for recreation management have resulted in the erosion of interactions between managers and researchers. However, effective science exchange does occur, but requires innovative and adaptive approaches.
DOI: 10.1177/0275074009354121

Substantive Focus:
Environmental Policy
Science and Technology Policy

Theoretical Focus:
Agenda-Setting, Adoption, and Implementation
Policy Analysis and Evaluation