Customer Segments Among Family Forest Owners: Combining Ownership Objectives and Decision-Making Styles

Teppo Hujala, Mikko Kurttila, Heimo Karppinen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Empirical forest owner classifications typically distinguish groups based on owners’ behaviour or motivations. Typologies are used to inform forest and environmental policies and market-based service provision. However, single typologies may be weak in discerning owner groups that would bring new insights for policymakers or service providers. The present study aims to put together two previously documented owner classification frameworks to form and analyse customer segments for decision-support services. The first grouping is based on owners’ objectives for forest ownership, while the second grouping focuses on owners’ decision-making styles. These two typologies deal with subjects of interest and motivations for communication, respectively. The study uses a subsample of the Finnish Forest Owner 2010 survey data, collected in 2009 (n = 2,106). Via crosstabulation of the two groupings, the four largest and potentially most interesting combined owner groups are discerned: multiobjective learners (13 %), multiobjective thinkers (9 %), learning recreationists (8 %) and learning investors (7 %), while the other 16 combined groups each account for less than 6 % of owners. The result thus reveals the need for learning-oriented services for three differing principal subjects of interest as well as multiobjective services for deliberate thinkers, i.e. comparative information about forest management alternatives. The message for policymakers and service providers is that the majority of forest owners may be served with educative interactive services. Learning-oriented indifferent owners need special services to recognize their latent goals. Delegators need ready-made services for outsourced decision making and self-reliant owners need information packages of varying contents. Combinations of groups prove feasible for producing policy advice.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSmall-Scale Forestry
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)335-351
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 4112 Forestry

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