There are a multitude of interdisciplinary values that people derive from rural land. Productivism focuses on the commodity values of rural land, such as the use of land as a commercial input into agricultural production, timber harvesting and mineral extraction. Productivistic uses and values of rural land have been the traditional focus of rural land policy and management in the United States. Many rural areas in the United States are moving into a postproductivism era. Postproductivism focuses on both commodity and amenity values of rural land. Amenity values of rural land include recreational, aesthetic and ecological service values. When a rural area moves from productivism to postproductivism, value conflicts may arise between individuals and groups who have different preferences with respect to commodity and amenity values. Traditional rural institutions may not be set up to effectively handle such conflicts. There is a need to explore what types of institutions may be most effective in resolving rural land use problems related to the different and often competing values people place on rural land and landscapes.