Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Natural Resources

First Advisor

Brendan P. Fisher


Many scientists argue that the threat of invasive insects is one of the most pressingenvironmental issues of our time. Decades of research quantify the threat and risk invasive species pose to the New England Forest, yet there is little research combining both the ecological impacts of invasive insects and human attitudes of the potential threats they pose. This dissertation aims to understand the current attitude of landowners in the New England region that are experiencing the threat of hemlock woolly adelgid, emerald ash borer, or Asian longhorned beetle. This dissertation includes three different studies focusing on social psychology frameworks and theories to analyze survey data and will result in management decisions and implications of such attitudes. The first study focuses on understanding individuals’ attitude towards the threat of these invasive insects, and how exposure to the threat of invasive insects may influence these attitudes. The second study is to explore the relationship between New England landowners and their values and beliefs towards ecological services the land provides, and towards invasive insects. The third study analyzes landowner’s acceptability towards different management practices towards invasive insects. The combined results of this dissertation will provide key opportunities in our understanding of attitudes and invasive insects and expand the knowledge of attitude formation, and invasion ecology.



Number of Pages

123 p.