The forest as a taskscape: seeing through the good forest owner’s eyes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article is a reanalysis of interviews conducted in 2006 and 2009 with forest owners and their families. It gives a complementary interpretation of the forest owners’ decisions to replant spruce despite strong criticism from the public and from experts. The interviewees’ visual conception of the forest landscape and how they relate to it through their forestry practices is analysed. The results show that the forest owners prefer landscapes that are clean and tidy, showing characteristics indicative of forestry skills. At the same time they remain sensitive to the existence of other value systems among the public. The forest owners’ way of looking at the forest was characterized by the fact that they worked with the landscape; for them the forest is not only a symbolic project linked to identity, but also a taskscape, an imprint of performed work. In the discussion, the forest owners’ aesthetic value system is discussed and a supplementary answer is given to why forest owners refused to heed warnings about the replanting of spruce, a question that earlier studies generally attributed to forest owners’ wish to avoid short-term economic risks.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)


  • forestry economics , economic risk, forest owners, aesthetic evaluation, forestry practices
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-97
JournalScandinavian Journal of Forest Research
Issue number1
Early online date2017 May 22
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 2
Publication categoryResearch

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