what do you value in nature? Tell us!
Easy and fast! If you are planning a trip to Jotunheimen national park here is your opportunity to tell about your experience through a mobile app.
At UiT – The Arctic University of Norway, we have developed a mobile app to collect visitors’ experiences and benefits obtained from nature. We invite all visitors to Jotunheimen and Utladalen to download our free app “Jotunheimen Tracking”. You can tag liked/disliked areas with a simple screen touch (see Figure 1). Your participation is anonymous. Using this information, we will be able to create maps of use and visitor preferences.
How do I participate in the study?
You just need to follow three steps:
- Download our free app “Jotunheimen Tracking”.
- Click “Start” when you go on your next mountain trip.
- Mark and tag the places you like/dislike on the way.
Why should I participate in the study?
Visitors to national parks are increasing in the last decades and we all have the responsibility to take care of nature so next generations can enjoy it as we did some day. By participating in the study, you will collaborate not only with a research project, but also with the improvement of future management. Our research will bring managers new tools to incorporate users’ preferences and values in their decisions, thus increasing the effectiveness of management measures.
An important aspect of this study is to encourage visitors reflect upon their use of nature, and be aware of the many benefits they get from it. Creating consciousness among visitors may result in a higher compliance of management measures, and therefore an increase in management effectiveness.
Additionally, we believe that visitors are an integral part of conservation of nature. Thus, including all interested groups will benefit all parties, and also nature (see Figure 2).
Where will the study be conducted?
The study will be conducted in Jotunheimen national park and Utladalen landscape protection area. These two parks are frequented by people who may conduct different activities and hold a variety of preferences and values. Visitors will be able to track as many trips as they would like to from a variety of different types of trips (e.g. skiing, walking, running).
Why is this study different from others?
This study builds up on the end users, which are visitors, park managers and tourism businesses. We have developed this mobile app with help from these parties, and our goal is that they will receive the outcomes of the study, either through social media or through direct contact (e.g. email, interviews).
An important goal of this study is to develop methods and tools that ease communication between visitors and managers, which will result in improved conservation effectiveness.
Who is in charge of the study and how can I follow it up?
This project is developed at UiT Arctic University of Norway (Tromsø) by Lorena Munoz (PhD student) and the research team CultEs led by Vera Hausner. Our team is composed by researchers from several disciplines and countries, which help us understand the diversity of visitors and the complexity of ecosystems.
Do you want to know more?
We can be reached online via our Twitter , Facebook , Instagram and webpage. You can contact us if you have questions about our study or are interested on participating. We will also post our progress and findings.