Public Benefits of Undeveloped Lands on Urban Outskirts: Non-Market Valuation Studies and Their Role in Land Use Plans

30 Pages Posted: 1 Jun 2007  

H. Spencer Banzhaf

Georgia State University - Department of Economics; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: January 2007

Abstract

Over the past three decades, the economics profession has developed methods for estimating the public benefits of green spaces, providing an opportunity to incorporate such information into land-use planning. While federal regulations routinely require such estimates for major regulations, the extent to which they are used in local land use plans is not clear. This paper reviews the literature on public values for lands on urban outskirts, not just to survey their methods or empirical findings, but to evaluate the role they have played - or have the potential to play in actual land use plans.

Based on interviews with authors and representatives of funding agencies and local land trusts, it appears that academic work has had a mixed reception in the policy world. Reasons for this include a lack of interest in making academic work accessible to policy makers, emphasizing revealed preference methods which are inconsistent with policy priorities related to nonuse values, and emphasis on benefit-cost analyses. Nevertheless, there are examples of success stories that illustrate how such information can play a vital role in the design of conservation policies.

Suggested Citation

Banzhaf , H. Spencer, Public Benefits of Undeveloped Lands on Urban Outskirts: Non-Market Valuation Studies and Their Role in Land Use Plans (January 2007). Andrew Young School of Policy Studies Research Paper Series No. 07-28. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=990055 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.990055

H. Spencer Banzhaf (Contact Author)

Georgia State University - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 3992
Atlanta, GA 30302-3992
United States
404-413-0252 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www2.gsu.edu/~prchsb/

PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

2048 Analysis Drive
Suite A
Bozeman, MT 59718
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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