Extension Forestry
in the United States:
MASTER VOLUNTEER AND OTHER PEER
LEARNING PROGRAMS
Eli Sagor, Amanda Kueper, Charl...
Citations

2
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Landowner education

3
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Peer learning
“the exchange of ideas and information among landowners and
family, friends, neighbors, and other landowners...
Master Volunteer (MV)
and other peer learning (OPL) programs

5
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights ...
Workshop
image
Two-step flow model

Source: Watts & Dodds 2007,
J. Consumer Research

7
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. Al...
Study objectives
 Identify Extension Forestry MV and OPL programs
nationwide that target family forest owners;

 Charact...
Three data collection phases
Online survey of state
Extension Forestry
program leaders

Online survey of MV
and OPL progra...
Programs

10
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Map: MV & OPL programs

Master Volunteer
Other peer learning
Map source: www.infoplease.com
22 Master Volunteer programs
17 Other Peer Learning programs
Partnerships
39 programs, 186 contributing organizations:
52 University partners
42 State Agencies
27 Landowner associatio...
Operating budgets: MV programs
Range: $0 - $55,000
Average $12,875 (median $10,000)
10% of Extension forestry capacity in ...
Audiences specifically targeted

16
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Outputs
Most programs train <30 volunteers / year
13 programs have 100+ active
volunteers, including 6 with 200+, 2 with 4...
Content: State-level and MV
Left side:
Right side:
% states teaching
topic LESS now
than 5 years ago

Topics

% states tea...
Formats: State-level and MV

19
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Trends in 39 MV and OPL programs
over prior 5 years

20
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved...
Focus group results

21
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Why peer learning models?
“I would say over half of the evaluations… will have…
comments… about the value of learning from...
Program changes planned
during the next five years
Better communications
“We constantly strive to be in closer contact wit...
Communications
“the group of volunteers gets bigger each year but staff
time remains the same.”

24
© 2013 Regents of the ...
Discussion

25
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
Role of peer learning in toolkit
Peer learning is a common Extension forestry
strategy
Volunteer capacity built through pe...
Efficiency
Potential to improve efficiency of professional
forester time:
NY Master Forest Owner example
But: Requires inv...
Capacity
Potential to improve efficiency of professional
forester time:
NY Master Forest Owner example
But: Requires inves...
Evaluation
Increased demands to account for
outcomes, impacts

29
© 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All right...
Conclusions
Common Extension Forestry program model
Grounded in local personal networks
Reduced budgets, increasing demand...
Eli Sagor
esagor@umn.edu
(612) 624-6948
Amanda Kueper
Charlie Blinn
Dennis Becker

© 2013 Regents of the University of Min...
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Extension Forestry in the US: Master volunteer and other peer learning programs

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Presented in October 2013 at the Society of American Foresters Convention in Charleston, SC. This is a brief summary of an article currently in press (November 2013) in the Journal of Forestry.

Published in: Education, Technology
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  • Landowner education is the foundation of a broad suite of policy investments designed to encourage sustainable forest management. While state agencies, Industry, and private consulting foresters, and logging contractors all provide service directly to landowners, Extension Forestry programs are the primary providers of this landowner education.
  • Landowner education is the foundation of a broad suite of policy investments designed to encourage sustainable forest management. While state agencies, Industry, and private consulting foresters, and logging contractors all provide service directly to landowners, Extension Forestry programs are the primary providers of this landowner education.
  • Trust, access. Shown to engage landowners not reached through other Extension program models.
  • Landowner education is the foundation of a broad suite of policy investments designed to encourage sustainable forest management. While state agencies, Industry, and private consulting foresters, and logging contractors all provide service directly to landowners, Extension Forestry programs are the primary providers of this landowner education.
  • 39 programs in 25 states:22 MV and 17 OPL
  • 39 programs in 25 states:22 MV and 17 OPL
  • 39 programs in 25 states:22 MV and 17 OPL
  • Extension Forestry in the US: Master volunteer and other peer learning programs

    1. 1. Extension Forestry in the United States: MASTER VOLUNTEER AND OTHER PEER LEARNING PROGRAMS Eli Sagor, Amanda Kueper, Charles Blinn, and Dennis Becker 1 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    2. 2. Citations 2 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    3. 3. Landowner education 3 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    4. 4. Peer learning “the exchange of ideas and information among landowners and family, friends, neighbors, and other landowners” Kueper et al. 2013 Peer-to-peer learning:  Spreads information through formal or informal social networks;  Involves two-way (or more) communication;  Recognizes that every participant can be a teacher and a learner;  Is community- and participant-driven; and  Can occur through either an ongoing forum or one-time exchange. Catanzaro 2008 4 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    5. 5. Master Volunteer (MV) and other peer learning (OPL) programs 5 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    6. 6. Workshop image
    7. 7. Two-step flow model Source: Watts & Dodds 2007, J. Consumer Research 7 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    8. 8. Study objectives  Identify Extension Forestry MV and OPL programs nationwide that target family forest owners;  Characterize these programs in terms of delivery method, curriculum, audience, partnerships, budgets , and evaluation metrics; and  Describe trends in these programs by identifying recent and expected changes to program implementation. 8 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    9. 9. Three data collection phases Online survey of state Extension Forestry program leaders Online survey of MV and OPL program managers Focus group discussions with selected program managers 9 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    10. 10. Programs 10 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    11. 11. Map: MV & OPL programs Master Volunteer Other peer learning Map source: www.infoplease.com
    12. 12. 22 Master Volunteer programs
    13. 13. 17 Other Peer Learning programs
    14. 14. Partnerships 39 programs, 186 contributing organizations: 52 University partners 42 State Agencies 27 Landowner associations 20 Federal agencies 16 Trade or industry groups 15 Conservation or environmental groups 8 Conservation districts 6 Other 14 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    15. 15. Operating budgets: MV programs Range: $0 - $55,000 Average $12,875 (median $10,000) 10% of Extension forestry capacity in states that have MV or OPL programs (0.5 – 0.75 FTE) Almost entirely grant funded 15 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    16. 16. Audiences specifically targeted 16 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    17. 17. Outputs Most programs train <30 volunteers / year 13 programs have 100+ active volunteers, including 6 with 200+, 2 with 400+ 17 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    18. 18. Content: State-level and MV Left side: Right side: % states teaching topic LESS now than 5 years ago Topics % states teaching topic MORE now than 5 years ago
    19. 19. Formats: State-level and MV 19 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    20. 20. Trends in 39 MV and OPL programs over prior 5 years 20 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    21. 21. Focus group results 21 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    22. 22. Why peer learning models? “I would say over half of the evaluations… will have… comments… about the value of learning from other landowners, that they learned just kind of what works what doesn’t work from just talking during the down time or the… evening sessions. So, that’s… why we’re doing the format we are.” 22 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    23. 23. Program changes planned during the next five years Better communications “We constantly strive to be in closer contact with our network” Revenue Volunteer management efficiency Issue focus 23 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    24. 24. Communications “the group of volunteers gets bigger each year but staff time remains the same.” 24 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    25. 25. Discussion 25 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    26. 26. Role of peer learning in toolkit Peer learning is a common Extension forestry strategy Volunteer capacity built through peer learning programs lasts a long time Nimble program model? 26 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    27. 27. Efficiency Potential to improve efficiency of professional forester time: NY Master Forest Owner example But: Requires investment of coordinator, volunteer manager time 27 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    28. 28. Capacity Potential to improve efficiency of professional forester time: NY Master Forest Owner example But: Requires investment of coordinator, volunteer manager time 28 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    29. 29. Evaluation Increased demands to account for outcomes, impacts 29 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    30. 30. Conclusions Common Extension Forestry program model Grounded in local personal networks Reduced budgets, increasing demands 30 © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
    31. 31. Eli Sagor esagor@umn.edu (612) 624-6948 Amanda Kueper Charlie Blinn Dennis Becker © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, this PowerPoint is available in alternative formats upon request. Direct requests to the Extension Store at 800-876-8636. 31

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