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Abstract

Family forest ownership incorporates economic as well as several other motivations. While traditional rural livelihood has lost significance in the Nordic countries, multiple motives of forest owners have risen to the forefront of guiding owners' forest management behavior. At the same time, the requirements of international forest and environmental agreements force national policies to safeguard biodiversity and pay attention to many other ecosystem services more efficiently. The recent success of voluntary biodiversity protection schemes in Finnish family forests has raised the need for investigating further the emotional factors that affect forest owners’ behavior and decision-making. The present paper assesses the values and attitudes beneath forest owners' speech about their decision-making. Semistructured research interviews with 30 family forest owners from Finland were systematically examined from the perspectives of biodiversity and multiple use attitudes. The results show a broadness of multiple motives and their confounding with small-scale proactive protection of important values in holding level. The findings encourage policy-driven forest informing and holding-specific forest planning to consider the biodiversity-related values and goal frames that are present in owners’ decision-making. From a broader view, forest informing is recommended to be developed as instrumental soft governance, along with efficient economic incentives.

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