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Wildland fire and fuel management: principles for effective communication

Author(s): Eric Toman, Bruce A. Shindler
Year Published: 2006

In this paper we discuss four principles identified through recent research for effective citizen-agency communication and examine their use in accomplishing fire management objectives. Principles include the following: (1) effective communication is a product of effective planning; (2) both unidirectional (one-way) and interactive approaches are part of successful outreach programs; (3) communication activities that focus on local conditions and concerns can decrease citizen uncertainty and build their capacity to participate in solutions; (4) a comprehensive communication strategy will emphasize meaningful interaction among participants and build trust along the way. Ultimately, a long-term commitment to outreach and education will yield positive outcomes for resource professionals and citizen stakeholders.

Citation: Toman, Eric; Shindler, Bruce. 2006. Wildland fire and fuel management: principles for effective communication. In: McCaffrey, Sarah M., ed. The public and wildland fire management: social science findings for managers. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-GTR-1. Newtown Square, PA: USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station. p. 111-123.
Topic(s): Human Dimensions of Fire Management, Fire Communication & Education
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Technical Report or White Paper
NRFSN number: 11437
FRAMES RCS number: 8406
Record updated: Feb 4, 2014