MISSOULA - The University of Montana will host two dozen conservationists from around the world while they explore western Montana over the next several days as part of the 17th annual International Seminar on Protected Area Management.
Participants in the seminar, which is sponsored by the Wilderness Institute and the College of Forestry and Conservation at UM, arrived in Missoula on June 28. UM serves as base camp for participants while they take educational excursions to four national forests, two wilderness areas, the Flathead Indian Reservation, several rural communities and Yellowstone National Park before their trip culminates with a visit to Washington, D.C.
The 26 mid-career protected area managers represent Botswana, Brazil, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Gabon, Georgia, Indonesia, Israel, Madagascar, Mongolia, Nepal, Philippines, Republic of the Congo, Tunisia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
"What better place than Missoula to bring this diverse group from the around the world to explore public landscapes in the western U.S. as inspiration to discuss challenges and successes faced by people who manage protected areas around the globe," said Wilderness Institute Director Natalie Dawson, who also directs the seminar.
The International Seminar on Protected Area Management, which also is sponsored by the U.S. Forest Service, is an integrated, state-of-the-art course that examines strategies to conserve the world's most special places. The seminar is designed for midcareer planners and managers of nationally significant protected areas worldwide, and focuses on evaluating the policies and institutional arrangements that sustain both people and natural resources.