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Lincoln Larson

Associate Professor

Biltmore Hall (Robertson Wing) 4008L

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Bio

Education:

  • B.S., Biology, Duke University
  • M.S., Forest Resources, University of Georgia
  • Ph.D., Natural Resources Recreation and Tourism, University of Georgia

Courses Taught at NC State:

PRT 350 – Outdoor Recreation Management
PRT 500 – Conceptual Foundations of Recreation
PRT 550 – Human Behavior & the Environment

For more information about Dr. Larson’s work, please visit: https://faculty.cnr.ncsu.edu/lincolnlarson/

Research Interests:

Dr. Larson uses a variety of social science methods to understand human-environment interactions and address natural resource management and conservation issues. His human dimensions research questions and projects focus on three broad themes (natural resource management and conservation, outdoor recreation and health, and environmental education and stewardship) that are designed to help scientists, land managers, and the general public understand, communicate, and collaboratively respond to emerging challenges facing parks and protected areas. Dr. Larson’s recent work has focused on many different topics including:

  • Parks and protected area management
  • Nature-based recreation, health, and well-being
  • Community-based conservation and sustainable development
  • Human-wildlife interactions and conflict
  • Environmental education and interpretation

Selected Publications by Research Theme (for a full list of publications, click here):

Natural Resource Management & Conservation

  • Casola, W. R., Rushing, J., Futch, S., Vayer, V., Lawson, D. F., Cavalieri, M., Larson, L. R., & Peterson, M. N. (in press). How do YouTube videos impact tolerance of wolves? Human Dimensions of Wildlife. DOI: 10.1080/10871209.2020.1773582
  • Cooper, C. B., & Larson, L. R. (2020). Advice for collaborations between natural and social scientists: A response to Martin (2020). BioScience, 70(4), 372. DOI: 10.1093/biosci/biaa029
  • Sene-Harper, A., Matarrita-Cascante, D., & Larson, L. (2019). Leveraging local livelihood strategies to support conservation and development in West AfricaEnvironmental Development, 29, 16-28. DOI: 10.1016/j.envdev.2018.11.002
  • Holland, K. K., Larson, L. R., & Powell, R. B. (2018). Characterizing conflict between humans and big cats Panthera spp: a systematic review of research trends and management opportunitiesPLoS ONE, 13(9): e0203877. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0203877
  • Stedman, R. C., Larson, L. R., Tidball, K. G., Tidball, M., & Curtis, P. D. (2017). Hunting and the local food movement: insights from New York StateWildlife Society Bulletin, 41(4), 720-728. DOI:10.1002/wsb.802
  • Larson, L. R., Lauber, T. B., & Kay, D. L. (2017). Local government capacity to respond to environmental change: Insights from towns in New York StateEnvironmental Management, 60(1), 118-135. doi: 10.1007/s00267-017-0860-1
  • Larson, L. R., Conway, A. L., Krafte, K. E., Hernandez, S. M., & Carroll, J. P. (2016). Community-based conservation as a potential source of conflict around a protected area in Sierra LeoneEnvironmental Conservation, 43(3), 242-252. doi: 10.1017/S0376892916000096
  • Larson, L. R., Decker, D. J., Stedman, R. C., Siemer, W. F., & Baumer, M. S. (2014). Exploring the social habitat for hunting: A comprehensive view of factors influencing hunter recruitment and retentionHuman Dimensions of Wildlife, 19(2), 105-122. doi: 10.1080/10871209.2014.850126
  • Larson, L. R., & Poudyal, N. C. (2012). Developing sustainable tourism through adaptive resource management: A case study of Machu Picchu, PeruJournal of Sustainable Tourism, 20(7), 917-938. doi:10.1080/09669582.2012.667217
  • Sharp, R. L., Larson, L. R., & Green, G. T. (2011). Factors influencing public preferences for invasive alien species managementBiological Conservation, 144(8), 2097-2104. doi: 10.1016/j.biocon.2011.04.032

Outdoor Recreation & Health

  • Rosa, C. D., Larson, L. R., Collado, S., Cloutier, S., & Cabicieri Profice, C. (in press). Gender differences in connection to nature, outdoor preferences, and nature-based recreation among young adults in Brazil and the United States. Leisure Sciences. DOI: 10.1080/01490400.2020.1800538
  • Harris, B., Schmalz, D., Larson, L., Fernandez, M., & Griffin, S. (in press). Contested spaces: Intimate segregation and environmental gentrification on Chicago’s 606 Trail. City & Community. DOI: 10.1111/cico.12422
  • Cothran, J. W., Bowker, J. M., Larson, L. R., Parajuli, R., Whiting, J. W., & Green, G. T. (2020). Fee hikes at state parks in Georgia: effects on visitation, revenue, welfare, and visitor diversity. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 38(3), 55-76. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2019-9726
  • Rigolon, A., Keith, S. J., Harris, B., Mullenbach, L. E., Larson, L. R., & Rushing, J. R. (2020). More than “just green enough”: Helping park professionals achieve equitable greening and limit environmental gentrification. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 38(3), 29-54. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2019-9654
  • Larson, L. R., Szczytko, R., Bowers, E. P., Stephens, L., Stevenson, K. T., Floyd, M. F. (in press). Outdoor time, screen time, and connection to nature: troubling trends among rural youth? Environment & Behavior. DOI: 10.1177/0013916518806686
  • Harris, B., Schmalz, D., Larson, L., Fernandez, M., & Griffin, S. (in press). Contested spaces: Intimate segregation and environmental gentrification on Chicago’s 606 TrailCity & Community. DOI: 10.1111/cico.12422
  • Wilcer, S. R., Larson, L. R., Hallo, J. C., & Baldwin, E. (2019). Exploring the diverse motivations of day hikers: implications for hike marketing and managementJournal of Park and Recreation Administration, 37(3), 53-69. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2019-9176
  • Keith, S. J., Larson, L. R., Hallo, J. C., Shafer, C. S., & Fernandez, M. (2018). Greenway use and preferences in diverse urban communities: Implications for trail design and managementLandscape and Urban Planning, 172, 47-59. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2017.12.007
  • Harris, B., Larson, L. R., & Ogletree, S. (2018). Different views from the 606: Impacts of an elevated linear trail on crime in ChicagoEnvironment & Behavior, 50(1), 56-85. DOI: 10.1177/0013916517690197
  • Larson, L. R., Barger, B., Ogletree, S., Torquati, J., Rosenberg, S., Johnson Gaither, C., Bartz, J. M., Gardner, A., Moody, E., & Schutte, A. (2018). Gray space and gray space proximity associated with higher anxiety in youth with autismHealth & Place, 53, 94-102. DOI: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2018.07.006
  • Whiting, J. A., Larson, L. R. Green, G. T., & Kralowec, C. (2017). Outdoor recreation motivation and site preferences across diverse racial/ethnic groups: A case study of Georgia State ParksJournal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, 18, 10-21. doi: 10.1016/j/jort.2017.02.001
  • Larson, L. R, Jennings, V., & Cloutier, S. A. (2016). Public parks and wellbeing in urban areas of the United StatesPLOS ONE, 11(4), e0153211. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0153211
  • Jennings, V., Larson, L., & Yun, J. (2016). Advancing sustainability through urban green space: cultural ecosystem services, equity, and social determinants of healthInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 13, 196. doi: 10.3390/ijerph13020196
  • Jennings, V., Larson, L. R., & Larson, C. L. (2016). Ecosystem services and preventive medicine: a natural connectionAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine, 50(5), 642-645. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2015.11.001
  • Cloutier, S., Larson, L., Jambeck, J., & Scott, N. (2014). Are sustainable cities “happy” cities? Associations between sustainable development and human well-being in urban areas of the United StatesEnvironment, Development & Sustainability, 16(3), 633-647. doi: 10.1007/s10668-013-9499-0
  • Larson, L. R., Green, G. T., & Cordell, H. K. (2011). Children’s time outdoors: Results and implications of the National Kids SurveyJournal of Park and Recreation Administration, 29(2), 1-20. (online access)

Environmental Education & Stewardship

  • Larson, L., Cooper, C., Stedman, R., Decker, D., & Gagnon, R. (2018). Place-based pathways to pro-environmental behavior: Empirical evidence for a Conservation-Recreation ModelSociety and Natural Resources, 31(8), 871-891. DOI: 10.1080/08941920.2018.1447714
  • Skupien, G. M., Andrews, K. M., & Larson, L. R. (2016). Teaching tolerance? Effects of conservation education programs on acceptance capacity for the American alligatorHuman Dimensions of Wildlife, 21(3): 264-279. doi: 10.1080/10871209.2016.1147624
  • Larson, L. R., Stedman, R. C., Cooper, C., & Decker, D. J. (2015). Understanding the dimensions of pro-environmental behaviorJournal of Environmental Psychology, 43: 112-124. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvp.2015.06.004
  • Cooper, C., Larson, L., Dayer, A., Stedman, R., & Decker, D. (2015). Are wildlife recreationists conservationists? Linking hunting, birdwatching, and pro-environmental behaviorJournal of Wildlife Management, 79(3), 446-457. doi: 10.1002/jwmg.855
  • Flowers, A. E., Carroll, J. P., Green, G. T., & Larson, L. R. (2014). Using art to assess environmental education outcomesEnvironmental Education Research. doi: 10.1080/13504622.2014.959473
  • Larson, L. R., Whiting, J. W., & Green, G. T. (2011). Exploring the influence of outdoor recreation participation on pro-environmental behavior in a demographically-diverse populationLocal Environment, 16(1), 67-86. doi: 10.1080/13549839.2010.548373
  • Larson, L. R., Green, G. T., & Castleberry, S. B. (2011). Construction and validation of an instrument to measure environmental orientations in a diverse group of childrenEnvironment and Behavior, 43(1), 72-89. doi: 10.1177/0013916509345212
  • Larson, L. R., Castleberry, S. B., & Green, G. T. (2010). Effects of an environmental education program on the environmental orientations of children from different gender, age, and ethnic groupsJournal of Park and Recreation Administration, 28(3), 95-113. (online access)

Other Research Themes (including teaching-related research)

  • Larson, L. R., Duffy, L. N., Fernandez, M., & Sturts, J., Gray, J., & Powell, G. M. (2019). Getting started on the tenure track: challenges and strategies for success. SCHOLE: A Journal of Leisure Studies and Recreation Education, 34(1), 36-51. DOI: 10.1080/1937156X.2019.1589804
  • Fernandez, M., Sturts, J., Duffy, L. N., Larson, L. R., Gray, J., & Powell, G. M. (2019). Surviving and thriving in graduate schoolSCHOLE: A Journal of Leisure Studies and Recreation Education, 34(1), 3-15. DOI: 10.1080/1937156X.2019.1589791
  • Camus, M., Hurt, N., Larson, L., & Prevost, L. (2016). Facebook as an online teaching tool: Effects on student participation, learning, and overall course performance. College Teaching, 64(2): 84-94. doi: 10.1080/87567555.2015.1099093
  • Larson, L. R., & Lovelace, M. D. (2013). Evaluating the efficacy of questioning strategies in lecture-based classroom environments: Are we asking the right questions? Journal on Excellence in College Teaching, 24(1), 105-122. (online access)
  • Hurt, N., Moss, G., Camus, M., Bradley, C., Larson, L., Lovelace, M., Prevost, L., Riley, N., & Domizi, D. (2012). The ‘Facebook’ effect: An investigation of college students’ perspectives regarding online discussions in the age of social networking. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning, 6(2), 2-14. (online access)

Grants & Research Projects:

Dr. Larson has served as a principal investigator or co-investigator on many different research projects funded by a variety of agencies and organizations, including:

  • National Science Foundation
  • U.S.D.A. Forest Service
  • U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
  • U.S.D.A. National Institute of Food and Agriculture
  • North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
  • South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Georgia Department of Natural Resources
  • Boy Scouts of American National Foundation
  • National Audubon Society

He has also conducted unfunded research focused on improving teaching and learning at multiple levels ranging from non-formal youth camps to college classrooms.

 

Grants

Date: 09/01/17 - 8/31/23
Amount: $868,885.00
Funding Agencies: National Science Foundation (NSF)

The goal of this proposed Research in Service to Practice proposal is to develop evidence-based principles to guide citizen science project owners in the coordinated management of project participants within the SciStarter landscape. SciStarter is a repository of over 1,500 citizen science projects. Through an AISL-Pathways award, the researchers developed SciStarter 2.0 tools which can be used to study and coordinate recruitment and retention strategies across projects. Coordinated management has the potential to deepen volunteer learning and growth and benefit project goals because it can address across-project skew, evolving motivations, seasonal gaps, untapped synergies across projects, and other unanticipated factors that cannot be addressed via management within project silos. The researchers designed SciStarter for embedded tracking of participation dynamics in a landscape of projects. They propose to expand embedded assessment to measure scientific, learning, and conservation outcomes and their links to participation dynamics within and across projects. Through social network analysis, they will describe patterns of bridges, ties, and distances among projects based on the cross-over of participants. They also propose qualitative research to understand project managers? perceptions of SciStarter and the costs and benefits of coordinated management of citizen scientists. Ultimately, the proposed study will lead to guidance to create synergies and mutually beneficial outcomes among projects by broader adoption of the newly developed SciStarter 2.0 tools.

Date: 08/01/21 - 8/01/23
Amount: $130,582.00
Funding Agencies: US Fish & Wildlife Service

We propose a project to measure support for chronic wasting disease (CWD) management among North Carolina (NC) deer hunters and determine how that support may change if/when CWD emerges in NC. This information is critical to ensure the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC) can most effectively enact CWD prevention measures and carry out an effective response in the future if CWD emerges in the state. This project will address the following research objectives: 1. Measure CWD knowledge levels among deer hunters 2. Measure CWD risk perception among deer hunters 3. Determine intended behaviors related to CWD management among deer hunters 4. Measure willingness to pay for CWD management, and preferred mechanisms for payment, among deer hunters 5. Develop and test a synthesizing theoretical model for relationships among key drivers of deer hunters’ CWD relevant behaviors

Date: 01/01/22 - 12/31/22
Amount: $39,694.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of Interior (DOI)

Recent R3 projects focused on college students, such as Academics Afield, have demonstrated success and revealed unique opportunities for recruiting new hunters from non-traditional backgrounds (e.g., women, young adults from urban areas). However, more can be done to diversify the population of young adults who participate in these programs. In September 2021, the Georgia Wildlife Federation, working in conjunction with our NCSU team, was awarded a grant from the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) Multistate Conservation Grant Program (MSCGP) to extend and expand the effective Academics Afield program model to focus on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across the Southeastern United States. Our team at NC State University will be helping to implement and evaluate this project. We will leverage our existing experience, infrastructure, and partnerships to identify and address the unique constraints faced by African Americans and create opportunities to make hunting and shooting sports more relevant and inclusive for students of color. In addition to increasing participation in hunting and shooting sports, this project will also help underrepresented and historically marginalized populations forge a stronger positive relationship with the outdoors, hunting, and wildlife management agencies.

Date: 12/31/21 - 12/31/22
Amount: $56,046.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of Interior (DOI)

Achieving the Southeast Conservation Adaptation Strategy (SECAS) goal of a 10% improvement in health, function, and connectivity in southeastern ecosystems by 2060 requires regional conservation efforts. Regional science based conservation partnerships are critical for AFWA goals (e.g., President’s task force report), national responses to SWAP revisions (Mawdsley et al., 2020), tackling the 30x30 initiative (Stein et al., 2021), and responding to climate change (Lackstrom et al., 2018). We propose addressing the primary gap in knowledge around viability of regional responses to wildlife conservation initiatives by surveying state agency leadership (at the division chief level) and field biologists from across the SEAFWA states. We will address several questions. First, we will measure which elements of wildlife conservation respondents are willing to engage in at a regional level and how much they are willing to push for a regional response to each element (Objective 1). The ten elements to be assessed include the eight required elements of the 2025 SWAPs as well as the 30x30 initiative and climate change adaptation. The SWAP elements, however, may be collapsed into a smaller set based on feedback from the project advisory board (e.g., planning for adaptive management and coordinating among stakeholders could be merged). Second, we will ask respondents what assistance is most valuable for developing regional responses (Objective 2). Third, we will ask participants to list perceived costs (e.g., interfering with long term data collection for indices) and benefits (e.g., leveraging resources across state borders) associated with regional planning for each element (Objective 3).

Date: 07/01/20 - 9/30/22
Amount: $199,371.00
Funding Agencies: US Forest Service

Despite many benefits of urban greening, tree-planting programs in diverse communities nationwide often face strong local resistance, especially on private lands. This resistance impacts the success of initiatives such as Green Heart, an urban greening effort in Louisville, KY, designed to create healthier neighborhoods by encouraging tree planting to mitigate air pollution. Working with leaders of Green Heart, our project will investigate various factors (social and/or environmental) that influence the success of greening interventions and identify environmentally just practices to promote healthy urban communities across the US. Using Louisville as a case study, with lessons learned from other cities, we aim to: (1) Synthesize current state of knowledge regarding public support for urban greening across diverse communities; (2) Identify factors associated with tree-planting program success; (3) Examine public perceptions of relationships between urban trees, health, and neighborhood change; and (4) Define and share best practices to promote a national community of practice focused on equitable and inclusive urban greening. Our efforts will culminate in a “best practice” guide and toolkit, shared with a growing national community of practice promoting social equity in urban forestry. Ultimately, the project will identify strategies to promote urban greening with communities, not just within communities. 

Date: 10/01/19 - 9/30/22
Amount: $356,750.00
Funding Agencies: Institute of Museum & Library Services

Through a collaboration between the NC Museum of Natural Sciences (NCMNS) and NC State University (NCSU), the goal of this proposed Building Capacity, research-in-service-of-practice project is to develop and foster a Community of Practice (CoP) for collective evaluation among a set of 54 non-formal science museums across the state of North Carolina. Programs at science museums have the capacity to contribute to a variety of informal learning outcomes across diverse populations, increasing knowledge and understanding of science as well as broader science literacy. Evaluation provides concrete evidence regarding the degree to which an educational program is working to achieve these goals, thus informing important decisions regarding further design, development, and implementation. However, despite these benefits, evaluation is not widely utilized across the field of informal science education. Many non-formal science education entities conduct programs without knowing if they are working and, perhaps more importantly, without identifying what they are trying to achieve. Over three years, a series of regional professional development workshops and subsequent program evaluations will: 1) create a shared sense of purpose for programming and evaluation, 2) build capacity among science museum educators to conduct evaluation for their programs, and 3) establish a set of common metrics and methodologies for collective evaluation across the state and beyond. In addition, as the concept of collective evaluation is relatively new in museum programming and informal learning, evaluation efforts from this project will contribute to the scholarship of informal learning research and evaluation. In addition to evaluation of the project using the IMLS’s Building Capacity Performance Measure Statements, project success will be evaluated through mixed methods measurement of the achievement of defined project outcomes: 1) Increased perception of a common agenda among informal science education museums across the state of NC, 2) Increased use of common metrics across informal science education museums across the state of NC, 3) Increased capacity to conduct program evaluation within NC science museums, and 4) Increased levels of collaboration among informal science education museums across the state of NC.

Date: 07/01/19 - 6/30/21
Amount: $107,621.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of Interior (DOI)

Declining hunting participation negatively impacts state and federal agencies’ ability to achieve wildlife management objectives and generate revenue for conservation activities. The decline is driven, in large part, by decreasing numbers of young adult hunters. Our study will focus on one particularly promising audience - college students – in an attempt to reverse these declines. We will addressing NCN #9 by identifying opportunities for recruiting new hunters as well as retaining or reactivating individuals with previous hunting experience. To accomplish this, we will work with multiple state agencies and public universities in two-phased project. First, we will survey diverse undergraduate students at participating universities to assess their hunting-related perceptions and behaviors and highlight potential R3 programming and outreach opportunities targeting specific subgroups. Second, we will utilize this information to develop, implement, and evaluate R3 workshops for college students without (or with very little) previous hunting experience. Our goal is to reveal best practices for cultivating and sustaining positive perceptions of and participation in hunting across different geographical and cultural contexts. Results shared via a Practitioner’s Guide (with suggested R3 Program Outline), academic publications/presentation, and workshops will help agency professionals, educators, and researchers understand and connect with young adult audiences.  

Date: 01/01/18 - 6/30/20
Amount: $122,183.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of Interior (DOI)

Declining hunting participation negatively impacts state and federal agencies’ ability to achieve wildlife management objectives and generate revenue for conservation activities. The decline is driven, in large part, by decreasing numbers of young adult hunters. Our study will focus on one particularly promising audience - college students – in an attempt to reverse these declines. We will addressing NCN #9 by identifying opportunities for recruiting new hunters as well as retaining or reactivating individuals with previous hunting experience. To accomplish this, we will work with multiple state agencies and public universities in two-phased project. First, we will survey diverse undergraduate students at participating universities to assess their hunting-related perceptions and behaviors and highlight potential R3 programming and outreach opportunities targeting specific subgroups. Second, we will utilize this information to develop, implement, and evaluate R3 workshops for college students without (or with very little) previous hunting experience. Our goal is to reveal best practices for cultivating and sustaining positive perceptions of and participation in hunting across different geographical and cultural contexts. Results shared via a Practitioner’s Guide (with suggested R3 Program Outline), academic publications/presentation, and workshops will help agency professionals, educators, and researchers understand and connect with young adult audiences.  

Date: 08/15/17 - 7/31/19
Amount: $68,580.00
Funding Agencies: NC Wildlife Resources Commission

Project Description: Citizen science represents an innovative strategy for inspiring active engagement in conservation-related issues and fostering higher levels of nature-based recreation, ecological knowledge, and environmental concern. However, more research is needed to understand to what extent and how citizen science projects achieve these goals. The newly constructed Candid Critters project (http://www.nccandidcritters.org/), an offshoot of the successful eMammal camera trapping citizen science platform, has a unique capacity to serve as a wildlife education and outreach tool for residents of all ages across the state of North Carolina. Our proposed study will investigate the potential educational value of this innovative tool by exploring the impact of Candid Critters on participants’ beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors with respect to conservation. Specifically, we aim to: 1. Describe the demographic attributes, motivations, and nature-based recreation preferences that define different subgroups of project participants (hunters, youth, etc.). 2. Assess baseline beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors related to wildlife and wildlife conservation among participants prior to project participation. 3. Evaluate changes in beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors related to wildlife and wildlife conservation throughout multiple stages of project participation. 4. Identify specific aspects of the project experience that are most influential with respect to overall satisfaction and conservation outcomes. Our proposed study spans 2 years and involves two different data collection efforts: one focused on adults and another focused on youth in K-12 classrooms. We will evaluate project efficacy by conducting pre- and post-project surveys that assess changes in variables such as wildlife knowledge and perceptions, connection to nature, conservation behaviors, and awareness and perceptions of NCWRC. We will integrate this self-reported data with embedded assessments and participation metrics linked to the project’s online interface. By comparing responses across time and linking them to project engagement patterns, we hope to identify particular aspects/elements of the Candid Critters experience that are more likely to generate positive outcomes across different subgroups of participants. Ultimately, our evaluation data should facilitate development of recommendations to guide future implementation of Candid Critters (specifically) and citizen science projects (generally), increasing public awareness of and support for wildlife conservation across the state of North Carolina.


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