Perceptions of goods, services and eco-cultural attributes of Native Americans and Caucasians in Idaho



Understanding perceptions of how people value environmental resources is critical to conservation and management of ecosystems. We used interviews to examine perceptions and valuations of goods, services, and eco-cultural attributes of Native Americans and Caucasians attending an American Indian festival. The Native Americans interviewed were younger, achieved lower levels of education, and had lower mean incomes than did the Caucasians. There were no significant differences in the percentage of Native Americans and Caucasians engaged in consumptive and nonconsumptive activities, although a significantly greater percentage of Native Americans engaged in religious/cultural activities than did Caucasians. Although the relative ratings differed, the most important characteristics for all three types of activities were clean air, unpolluted water, no visible smog in air, and appears unspoiled, which represent both goods and services (the former two) and eco-cultural attributes (the latter two). For nearly all characteristics, Native Americans rated them higher than did Caucasians. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.