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21.07.2018 | Ausgabe 5/2018 Open Access

Environmental Management 5/2018

An Examination of Whitewater Boaters’ Place Attachment and Specialization in Four Different River Settings

Zeitschrift:
Environmental Management > Ausgabe 5/2018
Autoren:
Silvia Kainzinger, Arne Arnberger, Robert C. Burns

Abstract

Research on place attachment suggests that place identity and place dependence differ between recreationists with varying levels of specialization, recreating in different settings and with different resource proximities to their home. To further explore this relationship, we compared place attachment and recreation specialization of whitewater boaters in four different river settings. Data were collected on three rivers in the US and one in Austria. Place attachment was measured using four place identity and four place dependence items. Recreation specialization was treated as a multivariate construct consisting of the three dimensions; behavior, skill, and enduring involvement. The results of a cluster analysis revealed three specialization clusters. Two ANOVAs were performed by using place dependence and place identity as dependent variables and specialization clusters and the sampling rivers as independent variables. Place identity was not expressed differently between rivers but differed in specialization clusters. Place dependence was different between rivers but not between specialization clusters. Findings suggest that place attachment dimensions vary in river setting and specialization levels. Management should take into account that boaters exhibit different place attachment based on the specialization level and resource proximity to their home.

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