Extension Educator, Ohio Sea Grant College Program
This report summarizes the findings of an applied research project conducted by the Ohio Sea Grant College Program (OSG) in the spring of 2020. The project examines collaborative environmental management in the Cuyahoga River Area of Concern (AOC), focusing on the biophysical nature of the river system, the reciprocal nature of local culture on river restoration activities, and institutional rules governing decision-making within the watershed. Twenty-three semi-structured interviews were conducted with members of the Cuyahoga AOC Advisory Committee and one alternate member (hereafter referred to as the “Advisory Committee”) to gather data on the decision-making processes and collaborative relationships that shape management actions in the watershed, and to solicit recommendations on how to achieve sustainable outcomes. The results should be helpful to identify and overcome common transaction costs associated with collaborative environmental management and inform the way the Advisory Committee shares information, coordinates activities, agrees on conservation strategies, and supports management actions approved by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA).