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Faculty and Staff Profile

Matthew Brownlee

Associate Professor of Parks and Conservation Area Management
Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management

Office: 275A Lehotsky Hall
Phone: 864-656-3744
Email: MBROWNL@clemson.edu
Vita: View
 

 Educational Background

Ph.D. Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management
Clemson University 2012

M.S. Recreation Administration
Aurora University 2004

B.S. Outdoor Education
Northland College 1999

 Courses Taught

PRTM 8110 Research Methods in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management
PRTM 4740 Advanced Recreation Resource Management
PRTM 3220 Recreation Policy
PRTM 4310 Methods of Environmental Interpretation



 Profile

Dr. Brownlee is an Assistant Professor of Parks and Conservation Area Management in the Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management. Dr. Brownlee’s inter-disciplinary research links outdoor recreation, park planning, and resource management. His applied research provides information to help park and protected area professionals manage visitor experiences while evaluating the reciprocal linkages in complex social-ecological systems (SES). Within parks and the SES context, Matt examines numerous phenomena and issues, including a) park visitor behavior and park capacity, b) people’s interactions with and attachments to climate-sensitive and climate-impacted environments, and c) the dynamics of complex social-ecological systems. Dr. Brownlee specializes in mixed-methods research design and advanced analytical tools, specifically related to applied social science research in parks and protected areas. He often uses methods that transcend traditional concentration areas and degrees, including advanced quantitative modeling, experience sampling, social network analysis, cognitive mapping, GPS tracking, GIS applications, and participant employed photography. Dr. Brownlee maintains particular expertise in methods related to the Interagency Visitor Use Management Framework (2016), Structural Equation Modeling, and advanced quantitative methods used in applied research. Matt has current or past projects with several federal and state agencies, including the U.S. National Park Service, U.S.D.A. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Utah State Parks. These projects involve addressing complex management issues across diverse protected areas, including but not limited to Katmai National Park & Preserve (AK), Lake Clark National Park & Preserve (AK), Kenai Fjords National Park (AK), Denali National Park & Preserve (AK), Buffalo National River (AR), Cumberland Island National Seashore (GA), the Bonneville Salt Flats (UT), and Theodore Roosevelt National Park (ND). Internationally, Matt has conducted research with Parques Nacionales Naturales in Colombia on the island of Providencia. Dr. Brownlee’s research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, federal and state land management agencies, and private foundations. One of Matt's greatest joys is working closely with graduate and undergraduate students through applied research. During this process, Matt and his students work collaboratively to address a critical management need in addition to unanswered academic questions. When not conducting research or teaching in beautiful Clemson, South Carolina, Matt loves spending time with his wife Mindy and his two children, Caroline and Lexington. Matt enjoys hunting, fishing, traveling, and community events, including, of course, Clemson University Football.

 Research Interests

Visitor use management in parks and protected areas; human dimensions of natural resource management; social-ecological systems; methods and measurement in applied social research

 Research Publications

Journal Articles (Peer-Reviewed)
*indicates publication with current or past graduate student

*Zajchowski, C., Brownlee, M., & Rose, J. (2019) “Can you take me higher? Normative thresholds for air quality in the Salt Lake Metropolitan Area. Journal of Leisure Research, 50(2).

Furman, N., Rose, J., Rushford, N., & Brownlee, M. (2019). Programs that work: The Wasatch Front Urban Ranger Program. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 37(1). doi.org/10.18666/JPRA-2019-V37-I1-9011.

*Zajchowski, C., Brownlee, M., & Rose, J. (2018). Air quality and the visitor experience in parks and protected areas. Tourism Geographies. DOI: 10.1080/14616688.2018.1522546.

*Verbos, R., & Brownlee, M. (2018). Assessing the credibility of the Weather Dependency Framework: Comparing backcountry skiers’ and hunters’ perceptions. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 36(4), 1-23. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2018-V36-I4-8744

*Peterson, B., Brownlee, M., & Marion, J. (2018). Mapping the relationships between trail conditions and experiential elements of long-distance hiking. Landscape and Urban Planning, 180, 60-75. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2018.06.010.

*Zajchowski, C., & Brownlee (2018). Combining environmental values with perceptions of infrastructure development ─ The Management Options Matrix. Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism. DOI: 10.1016/j.jort.2018.07.007

Hallo, J., Brownlee, M., Hughes, M., Fefer, J., & Manning, R. (2018). The experiential carrying capacity of a barrier island: A norm-based approach at Cumberland Island National Seashore. Tourism in Marine Environments. DOI: 10.3727/154427318X15276699095989

*Zajchowski, C., Dustin, D., & Brownlee, M. (2018). To err is human: Pondering the undoing of human-induced climate change. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 36(2), 1-12. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2018-V36-I2-8313

*Gatti, E., Bricker, K., & Brownlee, M. (2018). Human dimensions of winter use in Yellowstone National Park: A research gap analysis. Park Science, 34(1), 70-78.

Stamberger, L., van Riper, C.J., Keller, R., Brownlee, M., & Rose, J. (2018). A GPS tracking study of recreationists in an Alaskan protected area. Applied Geography, 93, 92-102. DOI: 10.1016/j.apgeog.2018.02.011

*Price, S., Blacketer, M., & Brownlee, M. (2018). The influence of place attachment on campers’ evaluation of ecological site impacts due to recreation use. Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, 21, 30-38. DOI: 10.1016/j.jort.2017.11.001

*Dustin, D., Zajchowski, C., Gatti, E., Bricker, K., Brownlee, M., & Schwab, K. (2018). Greening health: The role of parks, recreation, and tourism in health promotion. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 36(1), 113-123. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2018-V36-I1-8172

* Verbos, R., Altschuler, B., & Brownlee, M. (2018). Weather studies in outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism: A research synthesis and gap analysis. Leisure Sciences, 40(6), 533-556. DOI : 10.1080/01490400.2017.1325794

*Zajchowski, C., Verbos, R., Brownlee, M., & Skibins, J. (2017). “I’d like to be just a bit closer”: Wildlife viewing proximity preferences at Denali National Park & Preserve. Journal of Ecotourism. DOI: 10.1080/14724049.2017.1410551

*Verbos, R., & Brownlee, M. (2017). The weather-dependency framework (WDF): A tool for assessing the weather dependency of outdoor recreation activities. Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, 18, 88-99. DOI: 10.1016/j.jort.2017.02.005

Rose, J., Brownlee, M., & Bricker, K. (2016). Managers’ perceptions of illegal marijuana cultivation on U.S. Federal Lands. Society and Natural Resources, 29(2), 185-202. DOI: 10.1080/08941920.2015.1062948

*Zajchowski, C., Brownlee, M., & Furman, N. (2016). The dialectical utility of heuristic processing in outdoor adventure education. Journal of Outdoor Recreation, Education, and Leadership, 8(2), 118-134. DOI: 10.18666/JOREL-2016-V8-I2-7697

Dustin, D., Bricker, K., Brownlee, M., & Schwab, K. (2016). Lessons from the Legends: A content analysis of the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration’s Legends videos. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, 34(2), 106-115. DOI: 10.18666/JPRA-2016-V34-I3-7335

*Sgalitzer, H., Brownlee, M., Zajchowski, C., Bricker, K., & Powell, R. (2016). Modelling travelers’ philanthropy: Tourists’ motivations to donate at Sweetwater Chimpanzee Sanctuary. Journal of Ecotourism, 15(1), 1-20. DOI: 10.1080/14724049.2015.1117091

*Brownlee, M. & Verbos, R. (2015). Measuring outdoor recreationists' beliefs in climate change: Testing the Occurrence and Anthropogenic Causation scale (OC-AN). Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, 11, 1-12. DOI: 10.1016/j.jort.2015.06.003

*Altschuler, B., & Brownlee, M. (2015). Perceptions of climate change on the Island of Providencia. Local Environment, 21(5), 615-635. DOI: 10.1080/13549839.2015.1004165

*Verbos, R., Brownlee, M., & Skibins, J. (2015). Understanding visitors’ commitment to grizzly bear conservation at Denali. Alaska Park Science, 14(1), 60-69.

Brownlee, M., Hallo, J., Jodice, L., Moore, D., Powell, R., & Wright (2015). Place attachment and marine recreationists’ attitudes towards offshore wind energy development. Journal of Leisure Research, 47(2), 263-284. DOI: 10.1080/00222216.2015.11950360

Beeco, J.A., Hallo, J., & Brownlee, M. (2014). GPS visitor tracking and recreation suitability mapping: Tools for understanding and management visitor use. Landscape and Urban Planning, 127, 136-145. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2014.04.002

Brownlee, M., Hallo, J., Moore, D., Powell, R., & Wright, B. (2014). Attitudes towards water conservation: The influence of site-specific factors and beliefs in climate change. Society and Natural Resources, 27 (9), 964-982. DOI: 10.1080/08941920.2014.929768

Brownlee, M., Hallo, J., Wright, B., Moore, D., & Powell, R. (2013). Visiting a climate-influenced National Park: The stability of climate change perceptions. Environmental Management, 52(5), 1132-1148. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-013-0153-2

Brownlee, M., & Hallo, J. (2013). Motivations to visit designated wilderness at Cumberland Island National Seashore. The International Journal of Wilderness, 19(1), 34-40.

Brownlee, M., Hallo, J., & Krohn, B. (2013). Botanical garden visitors’ perceptions of local climate impacts: Awareness, concern, and behavioral responses. Managing Leisure, 18(2), 97-117. DOI: 10.1080/13606719.2013.752209

Brownlee, M., Powell, B., & Hallo, J. (2013). A review of the foundational processes that influence beliefs in climate change: Opportunities for environmental education research. Environmental Education Research, 19(1), 1-22. DOI: 10.1080/13504622.2012.683389

McKay, A., Brownlee, M., & Hallo, J. (2012). Changes in visitors’ focus during an appreciative recreation experience. Journal of Leisure Research, 44(2), 179-200. DOI: 10.1080/00222216.2012.11950261

Powell, R., Brownlee, M., Kellert, S., & Ham, S. (2012). From awe to satisfaction: Immediate affective responses to the Antarctic tourism experience. Polar Record, 48(2), 145-156. DOI: 10.1017/S0032247410000720

Brownlee, M., & Hallo, J. (2012). Climate change segmentation groups at Kenai Fjords National Park: Insight into visitors’ perceptions. Alaska Park Science, 10(2), 18-21.

Brownlee, M., & Leong, K. (2011). Climate change, management decisions, and the visitor experience: The role of social science research. Park Science, 28(2), 21-25.


Technical Reports and Research Summaries
*indicates report with current or past graduate student

*Peterson, B., & Brownlee, M. (2018). Evaluation of human use on the Jordan River Trail between Indiana and California Avenue. Technical report submitted to the Jordan River Foundation and the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program in fulfilment of Project No. 51005355.

*Peterson, B., Brownlee, M., Sharp, R., & Cribbs (2018). Visitor Use and Associated Thresholds at Buffalo National River. Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. P16AC00194.

*Peterson, B., Brownlee, M., & Sharp, R. (2017). Understanding Visitor Use at Cumberland Island National Seashore: GPS Visitor Tracking. Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. P16AC00449.


Sharp, R., Mechels, B., Sharp, J., & Brownlee, M. (2107). Research Synthesis and Gap Analysis for Visitor Use Related Studies at Cumberland Island National Seashore (1972-2016). Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. P16AC00449.

*Lilly, H., Rose, J., & Brownlee, M. (2017). Opportunities for Solitude in the Salt Lake Ranger District Wilderness Areas; Wasatch National Forest. Technical report submitted to the U.S.D.A. Forest Service. In fulfillment of Agreement No. 16-CS-11041901-044.

*Jones, C., & Brownlee, M. (2017). Urban Youth Outreach Strategy for the Salt Lake City Jordan River District. Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. P14AC00749.

*Brownlee, M., Verbos, R., & Merkel, C. (2016). OHV Riders in Utah: Benefits Based and Outcomes Focused Management. Technical report submitted to the Division of State Parks and Recreation’s Off-Highway Vehicle Program, Utah Department of Natural Resources. In fulfillment of Agreement No. 14-USP-0032.

*Brownlee, M., Verbos, R., & Merkel, C. (2016). OHV Riders in Utah: Economic Expenditures. Technical report submitted to the Division of State Parks and Recreation’s Off-Highway Vehicle Program, Utah Department of Natural Resources. In fulfillment of Agreement No. 14-USP-0032.

*Gatti, E., Brownlee, M., & Peterson, B. (2016). Evaluating and Mapping Student Preferences for Trail Features along Red Butte Creek. Technical report submitted to the Friends of Red Butte Creek.

*White, K., Brownlee, M., Furman, N., Beeco, A. (2015). Climber access trail mapping and GPS visitor tracking in Indian Creek Utah. Technical report submitted to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Bricker, K., Brownlee, M., & Rose, J. (alphabetical order, 2014). Illegal marijuana cultivation on public lands: Management perspectives. Research summary submitted to the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, Department of Justice, Fish and Wildlife Service, High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program, National Park Service, and Forest Service.

*Brownlee, M., Bricker, K., & Altschuler, B. (2014). Backcountry winter use assessment of the Central Wasatch Mountains. Technical report submitted to the Wasatch Backcountry Alliance.

*Brownlee, M., & Gochenaur, R. (2014). Recreation Use Assessment of the NHMU Parcel of the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Technical report submitted to the Natural History Museum of Utah.

Bricker, K., & Brownlee, M. (2014). Human Dimensions of Winter Use in Yellowstone National Park: A Research Gap Analysis (1972-2013). With substantial assistance from PRT 5960/6960. Technical report submitted to the National Park Service.

Hallo, J., Brownlee, M., & Fix, M. (2013). The application of the VERP planning framework at Pinnacles National Park. Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. J8450110020

Hallo, J., Manning, R., Brownlee, M., & Smith, B. (2012). Visitor Use Study at Cumberland Island National Seashore: Transportation and carrying capacity. Technical report submitted to the U.S. National Park Service. In fulfillment of Cooperative Agreement No. 14-USP-0032.

Brownlee, M., Hallo, J., & Jodice, L. (2011). 2011 Survey of marine recreationists’ attitudes towards potential offshore wind energy in South Carolina. Technical report submitted to Sea Grant Consortium, SC Department of Energy, and Santee Cooper Energy Corporation.

Brownlee, M., & Hallo, J. (2011). Visitors’ perceptions of climate change at Kenai Fjords National Park: Global beliefs and park specific attitudes. Technical report submitted to the National Park Service.

Hallo, J., & Brownlee, M. (2009). Visitor demographics and satisfaction of facilities. Research summary submitted to the Army Corps of Engineers.

Hallo, J., & Brownlee, M. (2009). Perceptions of drought, on-site behavior, and willingness to donate. Research summary submitted to the South Carolina State Botanical Garden.

 Honors and Awards

Funded Research Projects: Current or completed projects since 2015

*indicates substantial involvement of current or past graduate students


*Research to evaluate visitor characteristics within and across seasons at Joshua Tree National Park. (Brownlee, M., Powell, R., & Sharp, R.). Clemson University, Kansas State University, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform visitor use management and planning at Joshua Tree National Park. Brownlee: Co-PI; 42%. Current.

*Evaluation of the relationship between current conditions, travel patterns, visitor thresholds, and ferry services at Cumberland Island National Seashore. (Brownlee, M. & Sharp, R.). Clemson University, Kansas State University, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform visitor use management and concessionaire planning at Cumberland Island National Seashore. Brownlee: Co-PI; 77%. Current.

Analysis of visitor estimation procedures at U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recreation sites. (Brownlee, M.) Clemson University and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Research to inform visitor use estimation and associated planning within USACE recreation sites. Brownlee: PI; 100%. Current.

*Research to evaluate visitor use distributions, impacts, crowding, and conflicting use at multi-use sites in Katmai National Park & Preserve and Lake Clark National Park & Preserve. (Sharp, R., Brownlee, M., Erlenbach, J., & Robbins, C.). Kansas State University, Clemson University, Washington State University, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform backcountry management at Katmai National Park & Preserve and Lake Clark National Park & Preserve. Brownlee: Co-PI; 26%. Current.

*Research to inform visitor use management at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. (Sharp, R., Brownlee, M., & Bricker, K.). Kansas State University, University of Utah, Clemson University, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform visitor use management at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Brownlee: Co-PI; 50%. Current.

*CNH-L: Adaptation, mitigation, and biophysical feedbacks in the changing Bonneville Salt Flats. (Bowen, B., Brownlee, M., Brazelton, B., & Harman, C.). The National Science Foundation, University of Utah, Clemson University, and the Bureau of Land Management. Research to evaluate the social and biophysical reciprocity in the changing Bonneville Salt Flats. Brownlee: Co-PI; 20%. Current.

*Towards a better understanding of nature’s resiliency-building and restorative power for Armed Forces personnel, veterans, and their families. (Dustin, D., Bricker, K., Brownlee, M., Bryan, C., & Rathunde, K.) University of Utah, the National Center for Veteran Studies, and the Kendeda Fund. Research to identify and evaluate nature’s resiliency-building and restorative power for Armed Forces personnel, veterans, and their families. Brownlee: Co-PI; 20%. Current.

*Temporal and spatial distributions of visitor use and associated impacts on natural and social conditions at Buffalo National River. (Sharp, R., & Brownlee, M.). Kansas State University, University of Utah, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform management at Buffalo National River. Brownlee: Co-PI; 35%. Complete.

*Evaluation of human use and health outcomes on the Jordan River Trail before and after infrastructure improvement (Brownlee, M.). University of Utah and the Jordan River Foundation. Research to understand the efficacy of sign placement on trail use. Brownlee: PI; 100%. Complete

*Research to support urban outreach strategies at Timpanogos Cave National Monument. (Brownlee, M.). Kansas State University, University of Utah, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform management at Buffalo National River. Brownlee: PI; 100%. Complete.

*Wasatch Front Wilderness Stewardship: Assessing and monitoring opportunities for solitude. (Brownlee, M., & Rose, J.). University of Utah and the U.S.D.A. Forest Service. Research to evaluate wilderness quality in three designated wilderness areas along the Wasatch Front. Brownlee: Co-PI; 50%. Complete.

*Understanding visitor use at Cumberland Island National Seashore. (Sharp, R., & Brownlee, M.). Kansas State University, University of Utah, and the U.S. National Park Service. Research to inform management at Cumberland Island National Seashore. Brownlee: Co-PI; 51%. Complete.

*Evaluating and mapping student preferences for trail features and potential uses in the Red Butte Creek riparian corridor. (Brownlee, M.). University of Utah and Friends of Red Butte Creek. Research to spatially map social preference data in order to outline, compare, and propose the three most socially desirable trail routes. Brownlee: PI; 100%. Complete.

*A Comprehensive Survey of OHV Riders in Utah: Benefits Based Analysis and Economic Impact. (Brownlee, M.). University of Utah and the Utah Department of Natural Resources (Division of State Parks and Recreation; OHV Program). Research to evaluate riders’ desired benefits, perceived availability of amenities, and monetary expenditures. Brownlee: PI; 100%. Complete.






 Links

Clemson University Institute for Parks