Community-based social impact assessment: The case of salmon-recovery on the lower snake river

Charles C. Harris, Erik A. Nielsen, William J. McLaughlin, Dennis R. Becker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This paper presents a process for gathering and using data for socio-economic indicators in a community-based impact assessment conducted in 1999 across a three-state area. It assessed community-level impacts of alternative Federal actions to recover salmon runs, ranging from maintaining the existing hydro system to breaching four dams on the lower Snake River. Residents from 27 diverse communities participated in structured, interactive forums that sought to empower them with an understanding of the results of concurrent biological, economic and physical impact studies as the basis for making more informed judgments. This approach raises significant issues for developing and applying socio-economic indicators to a highly controversial effort to sustain endangered species across a large landscape.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-118
Number of pages10
JournalImpact Assessment and Project Appraisal
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2003


  • Community collaboration
  • Environmental planning
  • Participatory research
  • Salmon recovery
  • Social impact assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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