whole_IngkhaninanSupaporn2004_thesis.pdf (14.91 MB)
A community and user-based site development plan for Myrtle Forest picnic area, Tasmania : theory and practice
thesisposted on 2023-05-26, 17:22 authored by Ingkhaninan, Supaporn
Myrtle Forest Picnic Area lies within the Recreation Zone of Wellington Park, Tasmania. The need for a Site Development Plan to provide recreational facilities for visitors at locations within the Zone had been discussed in a Park management plan in 1997, and local people and Park managers had also met since to propose certain possibilities for Myrtle Forest. This thesis presents both the results of my role as a participant researcher in the consultant study team that undertook production of the plan, and my position as an observer researcher who set out to evaluate the stakeholder consultation components of the planning process. Myrtle Forest Picnic Area became my case study. In my first role, my tasks were to collect Myrtle Forest biophysical and cultural baseline data, conduct a community survey using questionnaires, and interview key management agency representatives. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches were employed. My survey revealed that the site has a relatively high level of use from the local community, especially the immediate neighbours, but people from elsewhere also visit. Site users rated the quality of existing visitor facilities as \fair\" but said that improvements and additions were needed. In particular they wanted to see toilets barbecue facilities and site information. The worst problem identified at the site was vandalism. Key informants from the relevant agencies indicated that the planning exercise was most important for future development of the area and also saw vandalism as the issue of most concern. In my second role I acted as observer researcher in all the stakeholder consultation stages during data collection for the Site Development Plan including my own survey and interviews. From the literature I developed a set of criteria for evaluating participatory planning of this kind. The analysis revealed that the consultation program met some of the criteria but not all. Considering its time and financial constraints the consultation program was a fairly good and reasonable process however. Nevertheless with reference to the literature the participatory program can be seen as being relatively tokenistic. Within its limitations and attempting to be realistic I made suggestions for improvement for other natural area site planning projects at this scale. These included ensuring transparency by making the work program itself and the decision-making process subject to public inputs; keeping stakeholders informed of important facts and situations especially if changes occur and if stakeholders are likely to be affected; and setting up a planning project steering/decision-making committee with at least half its members drawn from participating communities."
Rights statementCopyright 2004 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (M.Env.St.)--University of Tasmania, 2004. Includes bibliographical references