New Project Better Prepares New Hampshire for Influx of People Seeking Nature during Pandemic

UNH-led interdisciplinary research team receives $15,000 grant to understand the role of the state’s Nature Economy in New Hampshire’s sustainable economic development as Covid-19 continues to shape how the state grows.

Man on a bike on a rail trail

A team of UNH researchers, Office of Outdoor Recreation officials and non-profit leaders will discuss and review data, such as land use conflicts, housing availability, changing climate, social injustices and ongoing workforce gaps, to identify ways the university can have greater impact on New Hampshire's sustainable economic development.  

Shannon Rogers, UNH Extension State Specialist of Nature Based Economic Development on the Community and Economic Development Team, sees this as a critical time for this work “Right now New Hampshire is experiencing record levels of recreation and tourism, soaring home prices and growth in rural communities as visitors and new residents seek a less crowded lifestyle amidst a global pandemic.  Adapting to changing conditions will be key to the state economic development and quality of life.” 

The UNH Collaborative Research Excellence (CoRE) initiative provided funding for this project, in support of the university’s deep commitment to interdisciplinary research and academic excellence to address issues facing UNH, our state, region, and beyond vision.  To-date, CoRE projects have engaged over 3,000 participants from academia, industry, and the community and stimulated over $35M in additional external funding to support world-class research and scholarship.  

This project, as well as 13 other CoRE projects funded this year, will be highlighted and discussed in a virtual seminar on Thursday, 14 October 2021, at 3:00 p.m.   

CoRE Team Members 

PI:    Shannon Rogers Associate Extension Professor, Community & Economic Development 

Co-PI:  Catherine Ashcraft Assistant Professor, Natural Resources & the Environment 

Co-PI:  Jayson Seaman Associate Professor, Recreation Management & Policy  

IWG Members  

Molly Donovan Extension State Specialist, Community & Economic Development 

Michael Ferguson Assistant Professor, Recreation Management & Policy 

Charlie French Extension Team Leader, Community & Economic Development 

Scott Lemos Lecturer, Business & Economics 

Rob Robertson Associate Professor, Natural Resources & the Environment 

Tyler Ray Granite Outdoor Alliance 

Scott Crowder NH Business & Economic Affairs Office of Outdoor Recreation Industry Development 

 

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