Humans are thought to be responsible for the most rapid spread of kauri dieback – through being carried in soil on footwear, on tyres, machinery and other gear. Surveillance suggest that spread has been strongly noted near walking tracks.
PUBLIC AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
Effective communication is very important in order to engage with the public and community. Without the support of the community we don’t have a ‘social licence’ to operate (i.e. ongoing approval within the local community and other stakeholders). This makes managing the disease near impossible as everyone who visits a kauri forest needs to do their part in helping us reduce the spread of the disease.
We have done further research into identifying factors that influence people’s responses, perceptions and attitudes towards kauri dieback, and improving how we communicate the key messages in the signage we use.
To reduce the likelihood of spread by human activities, the Programme is focused on researching human behaviour.
Although there has been a significant increase in the level of awareness of kauri dieback amongst forest users over the years, there is still a large number of people who do not follow the correct hygiene protocols at cleaning stations or keeping to walking tracks. Only a pinhead size of soil is enough to spread the disease. If cleaning stations are not used or incorrectly used, then the disease will spread.
Subsequently, we have developed a number of behavioural change initiatives to determine whether they are effective in improving people’s behaviour at cleaning stations so they use the cleaning stations and use them correctly.
Mark II Prototype Cleaning Station - Compliance Research Report
Track users entering and exiting the cleaning station were observed, to determine what cleaning equipment they were using. This was to research the level of track user compliance at the new prototype cleaning station.
90% or more of track users did ‘something’ to clean their shoes. Due to the variety of equipment available, and the new method of disinfecting shoes using a ‘treadle’, a large variety of behaviours were observed resulting in a difference between correct and partial compliance. The focus is now to shape track users behaviour to undertake the correct behaviours to achieve correct compliance.
Kauri Dieback Signage Icons: Public Testing
Icons designed by both MPI and DOC, which are being used to communicate instructions regarding kauri track usage, were tested to determine the publics understanding of these icons.
Icons communicating the messages to brush shoes and disinfect shoes were well understood. One ‘stay on track’ icon was far more effective than another, with the recommendation that signage be changed to the more effective icon over time.
Factors influencing public responses to kauri dieback control measures
Identifying factors that influence peoples responses, perceptions and attitudes towards kauri dieback controls.
Overall high level of awareness (75.7%) and past compliance with stations (88.9%) and track usage (78.2%). Lower compliance amongst younger visitors, the less educated, visitors outside AKL and those of Asian, Maori or Pacific ethnicities. Lower rates of awareness did not necessary translate to lower compliance. A focus on positive messaging and publicize compliance rates to reduce scepticism and demonstrate positive social norm. Education is clear and minimise the perceived threat to activities.
Link to report
A NUMBER OF SOCIAL SCIENCE / MARKET RESEARCH REPORTS ARE AVAILABLE BUT ARE PROGRAMME ACCESS ONLY.
For a view into the complete library of programme research and reports please see our Science Stocktake.
If you have any questions in relation to this area of research or the supporting reports please contact the Kauri Dieback team on the details below.
Please note that as more information becomes available on the nature of kauri dieback disease and the pathogen that causes it, some of these papers may be superseded.