Overview of Course
Outdoor recreation contributed almost $460 billion to the U.S. economy in 2019 and contributes substantially to economies across the globe. The COVID-19 pandemic has further contributed to an increase in outdoor recreation participation. This course will explore outdoor recreation through several economic lenses. First, we will consider consumer behavior models to analyze demand for outdoor recreation and to consider how demand might vary across demographic groups, regions, and recreational types. We will specifically consider how demand varies across the countries we will be visiting. Second, we will consider the production of outdoor recreation opportunities and consider issues such as environmental impact, congestion, and accessibility using case studies from the countries on our voyage. In this context, we will also learn how to apply cost-benefit analysis to decision-making around the provision and management of recreational resources. Third, we will explore how outdoor recreation has been used to value natural resources, discussing various methodologies in the context of specific natural resources.