Congratulations to the authors! From the inbox:
We are glad to announce that the 2012 Sören Wibe Prize was awarded to Christopher C. Moore, Thomas P. Holmes and Kathleen. P. Bell, for their article "An attribute-based approach to contingent valuation of forest protection programs":
Journal of Forest Economics 17 (2011):35-52
The article provides a well-structured, well-written, and innovative piece of research in applying contingent valuation of welfare effects of forest conservation in the special case of Eastern Hemlock in the United States. The article presents an "attribute based" CV method to study the welfare gains, to carry out cost-benefit analysis, and to inform the distribution of mitigation effort over land units. One of the key questions studied is the preference of the citizens concerning ecologically valuable sites versus recreational sites. The results indicate, interestingly, that people are willing to provide "substantial support" to programs that protect ecological sites, in spite of their description "difficult for visitors to access". For practical policy planning, the results are interesting. First of all, welfare effects from conservation clearly exceed the low conservation costs, and almost any program with positive welfare effects would pass the cost-benefit test. More importantly, when the welfare effects of the weighted optimal allocation of conservation sites are compared to the actual program, it turns out that the current allocation is strongly biased towards human-use sites as compared to a much larger share of ecological sites of the optimal allocation. The study demonstrates that although many conservation programs may pass the cost-benefit tests, significant welfare gains are possible if the preferences of the public are correctly accounted for in the allocation of conservation measures to forest sites with different environmental benefits.
The 2012 Award Selection committee comprised of: Sashi Kant, Jari Kuuluvainen and David Newman (chair).
Thanks to the support of Sören Wibe's family, the Journal publisher Elsevier, and the Department of Forest Economics at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, the prize winners will receive a cash amount of € 2 000, and will be invited to give a lecture at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.
Runar Brännlund, Ola Carlén, Peichen Gong
Editors Journal of Forest Economics