FORESTS, vol.8, no.5, 2017 (SCI-Expanded)
Many factors, with differing priority ratios, need to be assessed in the evaluation of forest roads. Stakeholder perceptions differ in the road assessment process and this research addresses those differences between academic and practitioner groups. The focus was on four main forest road assessment factor groups (technical, economic, environmental, and social) within 23 sub-factors to determine the priority ratios using the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) method. Stakeholder groups expressed different priority ratios, indicating varying perceptions of the importance of these factors: forest engineering academic staff identified technical specifications as the most important issue (with a ratio of 39.77%), while environmental issues were most important for forestry department academic staff, mechanical supply technical staff, and forest enterprise chiefs (with ratios of 41.79%, 39.95%, and 37.03%, respectively). Due to differences in stakeholder group perceptions, a participatory forest road assessment approach should be adopted.