Selection and Design of Local Referenda for Land Conservation
Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Forthcoming.
39 Pages Posted: 24 Aug 2008 Last revised: 17 Apr 2012
Date Written: March 13, 2010
From 1998 to 2006, over three-quarters of the more than 1,550 U.S. referenda targeting open-space passed. We analyze the success of the conservation movement at holding referenda in areas with greater ecological value and greater likelihood of supporting conservation. To do so, we first analyze the patterns in where referenda are held and in which finance mechanisms they employ. Controlling for these two selection patterns, we then investigate the factors determining the success of the referenda. Our findings suggest that conservation groups are pursuing a successful strategy, targeting communities with above-average probabilities of passing referenda and higher ecological value. Nevertheless, our results suggest that overlooked opportunities exist in minority and middle-class neighborhoods, in suburban fringe areas, and in the southeast.
Keywords: Land Conservation, Referenda, Sprawl
JEL Classification: H41, H76, Q38
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation