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Forest Practices Research & Monitoring Project Procedures
10 Steps to Completion
Step 1: A Project Proposal is Developed
A member of the Monitoring staff (project coordinator) drafts a proposal for addressing a top priority monitoring project. The proposal describes why the project is needed; the precise monitoring goals and questions relating to the project; what is currently known about the issue; and how the project will fill the need for information. It also identifies the scope of the project, how the general database for the project will be structured and the analytical and field procedures that will be used.

Step 2: Project Sites are Selected
Sites are selected for the monitoring project, using a random selection process when possible. Once the sites are selected, landowners are contacted so that permission may be granted to access their land to evaluate forest practices. When a study requires that data be collected prior to harvest, landowners are contacted, informed about project objectives, and then asked if they have sites they plan to harvest in the next few years that could be good candidates for the study.

Step 3: A Review Committee is Formed
A review team, comprised of a diverse group of stakeholders and researchers, is formed to review the monitoring project proposal, provide input about protocol development and review the final project report.

Step 4: Field Protocol is Developed
Field protocol is developed from existing protocols and established research methodologies, whenever possible. Field protocol includes the "why, how, when and where" of a monitoring project. It clearly defines data collection procedures, outlines a data quality assurance plan, and collectively serves as a guidebook and reference for data collectors.

Step 5: Data is Collected
Monitoring technicians visit monitoring sites and take measurements using established field and data collection procedures. The measurements are recorded on forms or input into hand-held computers.

Step 6: Data is Managed
The data that is collected is incorporated into a database structure that serves as a repository for field data. This process is started before data collection is complete.

Step 7: Data is Analyzed
Once data collection and management is complete, data analysis begins. Other researchers who are working on similar issues are consulted during this process to thoroughly review the project analysis and provide suggestions.

Step 8: A Draft Report is Developed
The project analysis is incorporated in a draft report that describes the state of the science, project goals and methods, key findings and recommendations. Researchers, the review committee and Forest Practices technical staff review this draft.

Step 9: A Final Report is Completed
Comments from researchers, the review committee and Forest Practices technical staff are incorporated into a final monitoring project report and executive summary. These are posted on ODF’s web site and are mailed to interested parties.

Step 10: Findings are Communicated
Key findings and recommendations are relayed to Forest Practices policy staff, as well as advisory committees (e.g. Forest Practices Advisory Committee and Eastern Riparian Functions Advisory Committee) that consider the need to make recommendations for Oregon’s forest practices rules. They are also presented at scientific, community and stakeholder meetings and conferences. Finally, the findings are reported annually to the Oregon Board of Forestry.


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