Document Type: Original Article


1 Ph.D Candidate, 2Associate Professors and 3Assistant Professor of Agricultural Economics

2 Department of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tabriz, Iran

3 Department of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Urmia, Iran


The Lake Urmia and its satellite wetlands have been selected as a demonstration site for the United Nations Development Program / Global Environment Facility / Department of Environment Conservation of Iranian Wetlands Project. This project aims to demonstrate reduction of the major threats of this wetland protected area coordinated through an integrated management plan. A choice experiment was developed to examine public preferences and elicit their willingness to pay on improvements in lake’s indicators toward good environmental status. A pilot choice experiment study was administered in Urmia municipality and the data were analyzed using a random parameter logit model. The results revealed that residents of this municipality might strongly prefer improvement in water quantity and were willing to pay significant amounts to promote current water level to the highest level. Furthermore, water quality, numbers of flamingos and Artemia stock were identified as the next important issues which warranted additional management attention.


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