Improving natural resource management in national parks
CALS Impact Statement
Human Dimensions Research Unit research with and outreach to the National Park Service (NPS) over the last six years has led to improved understanding of the application of human dimensions concepts and social science to address park natural resource management issues. The NPS made a substantial investment in development of a doctoral student at Cornell with integrated biological and social science expertise, coupled with skills to apply insights from such integration into natural resource management practice in national parks. Evidence of the impact of this research and outreach program has been demonstrated in presentations and published papers by NPS staff who are now applying more comprehensive management ideas, as well as the creation of a human dimensions specialist position in the Biological Resource Management Division of NPS, a Washington-level office with the mission to inform policy, advise parks, and train park management staff.
The need to support natural resource management in National Parks, especially with respect to wildlife management issues and community-based management collaboration.
We developed a manager`s model, studied issues in five units of the NPS, and through a graduate program and consulting, we have helped NPS clarify needs for integrating human dimensions into their approach to Natural Resource management.
Concrete evidence of impact is the creation of a new "human dimensions specialist" position in the Biological Resource Management Division of NPS, for purposes of continuing the benefits from the approach NPS is adopting.