Peer-reviewed article

Risk aversion hinders forestry professionals to adapt to climate change by M. Brunette, M. Hanewinkel and R. Yousefpour

Published on 18 January 2021

Article publication « Risk aversion hinders forestry professionals to adapt to climate change » by Marielle Brunette, Marc Hanewinkel and Rasoul Yousefpour in Climatic Change review.

Vol 162pages2157–2180(2020)

Forestry professionals’ attitudes towards risk and uncertainty under climate change, together with their perception about suitability of adaptation strategies, were investigated in Central Europe. We applied an original methodology based on lottery choices to quantify their risk and uncertainty attitude, combined with a questionnaire study about the adaptation to climate change. We tested the hypothesis that the higher the risk and uncertainty aversion of respondents, the higher the trend towards changing business-as-usual to adaptive decisions. The result falsifies the research hypothesis since uncertainty aversion has no effect, whereas risk aversion has a negative impact on the decision to adapt. We argue that risk of any change in the business-as-usual is higher than the expected risk of climate change impact in Central European forestry. We conclude that having access to novel information about expected impacts of climate change, taking into account institutional challenges and supportive experiences about useful adaptation strategies, may convince forestry professionals to adapt in the future.

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