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Private Landowners' Relation to Land and Forest in Two Estonian Counties
Department of Economic History, Umeå University.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
Department of Social and Economic Geography, Umeå University.
2010 (English)In: Journal of Northern Studies, ISSN 1654-5915, Vol. 4, no 2, 33-54 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This comparative study is based on two large surveys of private land and forest owners in two Estonian counties. While more than half of Põlva County is covered with forests, Läänemaa has a potential for summer tourism and second homes. We explore different rationales for obtaining landed property and analyse the individual property holders’ relations to – and use of – land and forests. Based on the two interlinked restitution and privatisation processes from 1991 onwards, our surveys reveal two main rationales among the owners: emotional and economic. The owners’ relations to the property are connected with legacies from both the interwar independence and the Soviet period. In addition, different rationalities, ambitions and attitudes are also related to how the property was obtained. In spite of the demand for land, many resituated landowners have chosen to maintain or recreate family property, even if the property was not actively used. In both Põlvamaa and Läänemaa the emotional bonds to land are strong among the owners of restituted or inherited property, while this is a weaker factor among those who have obtained land or forest through privatisation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 4, no 2, 33-54 p.
Keyword [en]
Estonia, restitution, privatisation, land ownership, forest, emotional bonds, economic rationality
National Category
Economic History Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography; Economic History
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-145806OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-145806DiVA: diva2:396874
Land and forest as resources in Estonia
Formas, 2005-1579
Available from: 2011-02-11 Created: 2011-02-11 Last updated: 2011-12-22Bibliographically approved

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