Dr. Erik A. Backlund awarded grant
Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Erik A. Backlund wants to know if people in the Adirondacks are satisfied. Backlund will use a $74,639 grant from the Northeastern States Research Cooperative to study factors contributing to community satisfaction in the Adirondack Park. The grant funding will allow him to hire undergraduates as assistants to collect and analyze data, a process that is expected to continue through the summer of 2012.
The main objective of his project, entitled "Community Well-Being, Satisfaction, and Attachment in the Adirondacks," is to characterize communities so as to encourage appropriate community development responses to the changing social landscape of the Adirondacks and New York's Northern forest. He will investigate questions of population and property value gains, employment opportunities, and economic opportunity to determine if environmental protections afforded by public ownership of land and the land-use controls are at the root of the region's problems. He will also analyze whether global and national economic changes are influencing Adirondack Park communities.
Backlund has degrees from Ithaca College, Clemson University and the University of Illinois. He has worked for the National Park Service and is a member of the St. Lawrence County Recreational Trails Advisory Committee. His classes focus on outdoor recreation, tourism, public lands and environmental management.