NOTE: This item is not available outside the Texas A&M University network. Texas A&M affiliated users who are off campus can access the item through NetID and password authentication or by using TAMU VPN. Non-affiliated individuals should request a copy through their local library's interlibrary loan service.
An analysis of public testimonies on the reintroduction of wolves to the greater Yellowstone ecosystem
MetadataShow full item record
Public participation in review of draft environmental impact statements (DEIS) has been problematic. This study focused on public hearings regarding the DEIS for the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho. The primary goal was a greater understanding of the content of public testimonies, integrating qualitative and quantitative approaches. Specific objectives were (1) to identify themes in testimonies (n = 162), and (2) to examine how themes varied among urban and rural hearing sites (two of each). Public discourse about alternatives in the DEIS was imbedded in the context of broad issues of societal concern regarding relationships between humans and nature as well as relationships between groups of citizens with diverse views. Three "Thematic Clusters" emerged from the qualitative analysis of testimonies: (1) risks/benefits of wolf reintroduction, (2) local/national sovereignty, and (3) trust/rnistrust. Underlying the Thematic Clusters appeared two clusters of "Broad Themes": (1) Anthropocentric /biocentric world views and (2) values related to justice and fairness. The hypothesis that themes related to a Biocentric World View would be more frequent at urban hearing sites was tested at 3 levels of analysis, (1) Broad Themes, (2) Thematic Clusters, and (3) Thematic Oppositions. The testimonies at urban and rural sites differed significantly (based on contingency analysis) in the frequency of Broad Themes (e.g. "Preferred DEIS Alternative", p < .00 1; "World Views", p < .00 I-, "Justice/Injustice", p < .0 1). Although the most frequent Thematic Cluster, "Risks and Benefits of Wolf Reintroduction", was equally likely to occur at all sites, there were significant differences among sites in frequency of the other Thematic Clusters ("Local/National Sovereignty", "Trust/N4istrust"). Several Thematic Oppositions varied significantly across sites ( e.g. "Negative Effects on Humans", p <.0001). This systematic thematic analysis of public testimonies illustrated that issues addressed in the DEIS prepared by the Fish and Wildlife Service were a "filtered response" to only part of the broader issues voiced by public participants. Variation in themes expressed at urban and rural hearing sites suggests that choice of hearing sites could affect the diversity and frequency of themes communicated by public participants, a factor to be considered in analyzing what builds trust in communication between federal employees and citizens participating in public hearings.
DescriptionDue to the character of the original source materials and the nature of batch digitization, quality control issues may be present in this document. Please report any quality issues you encounter to firstname.lastname@example.org, referencing the URI of the item.
Includes bibliographical references: p. 83-90.
Issued also on microfiche from Lange Micrographics.
Wicker, Kristy Joann (1996). An analysis of public testimonies on the reintroduction of wolves to the greater Yellowstone ecosystem. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from
Request Open Access
This item and its contents are restricted. If this is your thesis or dissertation, you can make it open-access. This will allow all visitors to view the contents of the thesis.