The Future of Wilderness Research. New paper published in the International Journal of Wilderness

Women camp near a glacier in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, an area which contains nearly ten million acres of designated wilderness, and has a array of connections to, and differing meanings for, many groups of people.

A 10-Year Wilderness Science Strategic Plan for the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute

The Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute is housed within the USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station; however, it is an interagency institute that supports stewardship of the NWPS and broader conservation needs. Its mission is “Advancing wilderness stewardship through transformational science.” Within the USDA Forest Service, Research and Development Deputy Area, mission-driven programs are formalized in a Research Work Unit Description (i.e., a strategic plan or “science charter”) that is renewed on roughly 10-year cycles. In 2021, we developed a new strategic plan and science charter for the Leopold Institute, to address key partner-identified wilderness research needs.

In this article, published last week in the International Journal of Wilderness on Friday, we first describe our multipartner process for engaging a broad wilderness community that included all wilderness management agencies in the United States. (USDA-FS and US-DOI, BLM, FWS, and NPS) and other national and international partners, and then we introduce the strategic plan and Research Priority Areas that will guide the Leopold Institute’s science agenda for the next decade.

The full article is available online, to read and download.