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Eucalyptus and development: explaining stakeholder perceptions in two Spanish Regions (EUCADEVE)
Start date: 18 Nov 2007, End date: 17 Sep 2009 PROJECT  FINISHED 

This research aims at understanding the influence of historical, developmental and cultural factors on stakeholders¿ perception using the case of eucalyptus plantations in Spain. Policymakers and companies are increasingly aware of the importance of stakeholder perception over their activities, especially those with high environmental and social impact. However, stakeholders' perceptions are not a function of company or governmental actions only. They vary among regions due to historical and cultural factor s. In Spain, perception differs between the regions. Asturias has presented a history of conflicts over Eucalyptus between organized civil society and the owners of eucalyptus plantations, while they suffer little resistance in Galicia.As the area of eucalyptus plantations increase rapidly, few debates exist in the literature of social sciences about eucalyptus involving social, historical and political issues. Authors agree that eucalyptus has had an important impact on the economy of many countries, but it is generating a rising resistance in many parts of the world because the environmental impacts of large scales of its plantations and its unfulfilled promises of economic and social impacts. However, there is a black-and-white discussion whether eucalyptus is evil or good. This research project will avoid this discussion and move the debate to understand why differences in stakeholders' perception happen and how perceptions are constructed and change over time.A qualitative research comparing the contra sting situations of eucalyptus plantations in Galicia and Asturias would help to understand how perceptions are formed and change. The methodology of the research is case study. Data collection will consist of an in-depth empirical field research in both regions in order to understand the main mechanisms of formation of perceptions over eucalyptus plantation.
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