U.S. Joint Fire Science Program


Date of this Version


Document Type



Fire Science Brief, Issue 121, November 2010


US government work.


With the urgency of wildfi re near every community’s door, federal agencies have sought a middle ground between the extremes of timber-industry and environmental positions, one that would enable active management to reduce fuels and create safer communities. At the same time, citizen groups have organized themselves to protect important community values connected with their neighboring forests. These developments have set the stage for increasingly successful multi-stakeholder partnerships. The collaborative processes facilitated by these partnerships require considerable patience and perseverance at the outset, but the result can be a healthier forest, reduced fi re risk, more stable planning processes, and sustainability for communities. The partnership between the Northeast Washington Forestry Coalition (NEWFC) and the Colville National Forest is a notable success story. In the summer of 2009, our team of Oregon State University researchers interviewed key people in the partnership, including the Forest Supervisor, forest and district personnel, members of NEWFC representing both industry and conservation perspectives, and members of a local environmental group. Their experiences and observations are presented here with the goal of providing managers and other stakeholders with ideas for similar efforts.