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FWC Conservation Social Science

a woman speaks with two men in front of a poster

About Conservation Social Science

Conservation Social Science focuses on the human component of our fish and wildlife systems. Staff use diverse social science tools and methods to study the complex relationships between people and the fish, wildlife, and habitat resources FWC conserves and manages. This includes learning what people think about fish and wildlife, how they interact with wildlife and nature, and how they engage with management, science, and conservation. These studies help other researchers and managers within FWC engage with and learn about our public and their communities. CSS includes a wide range of disciplines like economics, environmental/conservation education, and human dimensions.

Examples of Past Projects



Walters, L.J., A. Roddenberry, C. Crandall, J. Wayles, M. Donnelly, S.C. Barry, M.W. Clark, O. Escandell, J.C. Hansen, K. Laakkonen, and P.E. Sacks. 2022. The use of non-plastic materials for oyster reef and shoreline restoration: understanding what is needed and where the field is headed. Sustainability 14(8055): 21 pages.

Cleary, M., O. Joshi, and W.S. Fairbanks. 2021. Factors that determine human acceptance of black bears. The Journal of Wildlife Management 85(3): 582-592.

Morales, N., E. Camp, and M. Cleary. 2020. Modeling target species selection behavior among diverse freshwater anglers in Florida, USA. Fisheries Research 231

Morales, N, R. Paudyal, and C. Hughes. Creating lifelong anglers: impacts of a high school fishing program on youth fishing, related knowledge, confidence and perception of barriers. Knowledge and Management of Aquatic Ecosystems

Alvarez S, Solís D, Hwang J. 2019. Modeling shellfish harvest policies for food safety: wild oyster harvest restrictions to prevent foodborneVibrio vulnificus. Food Policy. 83:219-230.

Decker DJ, Siemer WF, Forstchen AB, Smith C. 2018. The role of human dimensions in state wildlife management. State Wildlife Management and Conservation. Chapter 13, The role of human dimensions in state wildlife management; p. 194-207.

Jacobson SK, Morales NA, Chen B, Soodeen R, Moulton MP, Jain E. 2018. Love or loss: effective message framing to promote environmental conservation. Appl Environ Educ Commun. 14:1-4.

Morales NA, Martin A. 2018. Evaluating a Stakeholder‐Driven Bass Regulation Change in Florida: Agency Staff and Stakeholder Perspectives. Fish. 43(8):361​–367.

Petrolia DR, Hwang J. 2018. Single-choice, repeated-choice, and best-worst scaling elicitation formats: do results differ and by how much? Environ Dev Econ. 69(2):365-393.

Petrolia DR, Hwang J, Landry CE, Coble KH. 2015. Wind insurance and mitigation in the coastal zone. Land Econ. 91(2):272-295.

Richard O. Flamm and Karin Braunsberger. 2014. Applying marketing to conservation: A case study on encouraging boater reporting of watercraft collisions with Florida manatees. Ocean & Coastal Management 96:20-28.

Forstchen AB, Smith CA. 2014. The essential role of human dimensions and stakeholder participation in states' fulfillment of public trust responsibilities. Human Dimensions of Wildlife 19:417-426.

Hwang J, Petrolia DR, Interis MG. 2014. Consequentiality and opt-out responses in stated preference surveys. Agric Resour Econ Rev. 43(3):471-488.

Karin Braunsberger and Richard O. Flamm. 2009. A mission of civic engagement: undergraduate students working with nonprofit organizations and public sector agencies to enhance societal wellbeing. Voluntas 20(1). DOI 10.1007/s11266-012-9289-6.

Julie K. Morris, Susan K. Jacobson, and Richard O. Flamm. 2007. Lessons from an evaluation of a boater outreach program for manatee protection. Environmental Management 40:596-602. DOI 10.1007/s00267-006-0389-1.

Sampreethi Aipanjiguly, Susan K. Jacobson, and Richard Flamm. 2003. Conserving manatees: knowledge, attitudes, and intentions of boaters in Tampa Bay, Florida. Conservation Biology 17(4):1098-1105.