Pathways History

Margaret Kenyatta, First Lady of Kenya, with Conference Organizers
Brackenhurst Conference and Training center | Limuru, Kenya

Pathways Kenya 2020 examined the costs of excluding diverse voices in decision-making teams and conservation programs and the benefits conservation as a whole will gain by their inclusion. Co-Hosted with the Pride Lion Conservation Alliance, the conference aimed  to provide a closer consideration of how balanced leadership teams, effective collaborations, and diverse voices improve conservation impacts.

The conference included an all-women’s panel, Diverse Perspectives from Successful Conservation Leaders”, and speakers such as Margaret Kenyatta, First Lady of Kenya, The Honorable Tiyah Galgalo Ali (Foundation for Pastoralist Women)Fred Swaniker (African Leadership Academy), and Judy Kepher-Gona (Sustainable Travel and Tourism Agenda). .

Pathways also ran a pre-conference Women’s Leadership in Conservation Training for 30 African women in middle to upper conservation management positions. Thank you to the trainers, sponsors, and participants for their contribution to this successful training!

Speaker Panel during Night 2 of the Wolf Reintroduction plenary sessions
YMCA of the Rockies | Estes Park, Colorado| United States

Pathways 2019 took a reflective step back to assess where Human Dimensions stands in its integration into management policy, whether we have achieved our desired goals…and if not—how do we? In a real-world application of this goal, the conference focused its plenaries on the issue of wolf reintroduction in Colorado.

Featuring leading experts like Diane Boyd (Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks), Mike Phillips (Turner Endangered Species Fund), Terry Fankhauser (Colorado Cattleman’s Association), John Duffield (University of Montana), Richard Knight (Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University), Suzanne Asha Stone (Former Idaho/Yellowstone Wolf Reintroduction Member), Kerey Barnowe-Meyer (Nez Perce Tribe), Jeremy Bruskotter (The Ohio State University), and John Vucetich (Michigan Technological University), the plenary included both presentations and a Q&A panel with the speakers each night. A World Café  was run on Wednesday for participants to collaborate, brainstorm and contribute to addressing a human dimensions approach to wolf reintroduction in Colorado. Videos of the plenary sessions can be found on YouTube. 

Welcome Session at Pathways Europe 2018 (Goslar, Germany)
Hotel Der Achtermann | Goslar, Germany

After two years of running the conference in Africa, Pathways ventured to Europe for the first time with Pathways Europe 2018. Co-Hosted with the Alfred Toepfer Academy for Nature Science of Lower Saxony, the conference theme “Resurrecting the Wild!?” focused on the recovery of wilderness across Europe, particularly the return of brown bears, wolves and lynx, and the public attention the return of these species has drawn. Prior to the conference, several trainings were held for practitioners and researchers to work on their “human dimensions toolbox”.

Pathways Europe brought together over 300 researchers, practitioners and stakeholders from 39 countries. Featured speakers included Catherine Hill (Oxford Brookes University), Maria Johansson (Lund University, Sweden), Alexandra Zimmermann (Oxford University), and a plenary stakeholder session run by the EU LIFE Project EuroLargeCarnivores.

Pathways Africa 2018 Trainees on a Site Visit During the Pre-Conference Training
Safari Court Hotel and Conference Center | Windhoek, Namibia

Pathways Africa 2018, co-hosted by the Cheetah Conservation Fund, featured the theme “Living with Wildlife” and covered topics ranging from The Changing Nature of Wildlife Conservation to Wildlife Ranching and Invasive Species.

The conference started with remarks from the Honorable Minster Pohamba Shifeta, Minster of Environment and Tourism from the Namibian Ministry of Environment and Tourism. The conference also featured plenary speakers such as John Kasaona, Namibian Conservationist, Maxi Pia Louse, Director of NACSO, and Sem Shikongo, Director of Tourism and Gaming from the Namibian Ministry of Environment and Tourism.

Prior to the conference, Pathways Africa ran our cornerstone training for Early to Mid-career African conservation practitioners. The 2018 training was a success, with 44 trainees from 13 different African nations.

YMCA of the Rockies | Estes Park, Colorado| United States

Pathways 2017 focused on the theme “Looking Forward”, with the goal of addressing the complex and serious issues impacting global society and natural world as we look forward to times of immense global change. Promoting conversations about comprehensively addressing these issues through better integration of knowledge and insights from human dimensions into governance of the Earth’s fish and wildlife resources, the conference drew an audience of 225 people from across 15 countries.

The conference featured Dan Ashe (Association of Zoos and Aquariums), Joel Berger (Colorado State University), and Laurie Marker (Cheetah Conservation Fund) as plenary speakers.

Attendees of the WWF Workshop at Pathways Kenya 2016
Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club | Nanyuki, Kenya

After years of successfully running the conference in the U.S., the inaugural Pathways Africa was held in 2016.

Pathways Kenya gathered of 200+ scientists and practitioners from 27 countries around the globe. A major focus of the conference was One Health, in both session tracks and keynote speakers. Other sessions ranged from human-wildlife interactions to wildlife governance and community-based conservation.

Pathways welcomed 56 African conservationists for our first Early to Mid-Career Practitioners Training. It was our aim to take advantage of the fact that we gather leading thinkers from all over the world on human dimensions of fisheries and wildlife management and do something concrete to help invest in conservation in Africa. The training has since become a cornerstone of the Pathways Africa conferences.

YMCA of the Rockies | Estes Park, Colorado| United States

The Pathways 2014 conference focused on the theme “Common Futures”, with the goal of addressing the complex and serious issues impacting the common future of the global society and natural world. Promoting conversations about addressing these issues more comprehensively by better integrating knowledge and insights from human dimensions into governance of the Earth’s fish and wildlife resources, the conference drew an audience of 241 people from across 18 countries.

Plenary speakers for the 2014 conference included Jianguo “Jack” Liu (Michigan State University) and Robin Reid (Center for Collaborative Conservation).

Beaver Run Resort | Breckenridge, Colorado| United States

Pathways 2012 was held at Beaver Run Resort in Breckenridge, Colorado, and focused on the theme, “Integrating Human Dimensions into Fish and Wildlife Management: An Essential Component of Adaptive Capacity”. This was based on the concept that a  key to adaptive capacity in fish and wildlife conservation is knowledge of value orientations, beliefs, attitudes, norms and behaviors of individuals, communities and institutions.

Pathways 2012 featured Gary Machlis (National Park Service), Michael Painter (Wildlife Conservation Society), Heidi Krester (Wildlife Conservation Society), Cynthia Jacobson (Formerly USFWS Alaska Region), Camilla Sandström (Umeå University), and Shawn Riley (Michigan State University) as plenary speakers.

YMCA of the Rockies | Estes Park, Colorado | United States

After the success of the inaugural 2008 conference, Pathways returned to the YMCA of the Rockies for another year. Celebrating the UN’s proclamation that 2010 was the International Year of Biodiversity, Pathways brought together 226 researchers and practitioners from 23 different countries to discuss the vital role of human dimensions and social sciences into fish and wildlife management, and how human dimensions exists in the field across many scales.

Plenary speakers for Pathways 2010 included Jaime Alexandra Webb (Secretariat of Convention on Biological Diversity), Tim Breault (Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission), and Temple Grandin (Colorado State University).

YMCA of the Rockies | Estes Park, Colorado| United States

The inaugural Pathways: Human Dimensions of Wildlife Conference was held with the mission of increasing the professionalism and effectiveness of the Human Dimensions of Wildlife Management field. The conference was designed to address the myriad issues that arise as people and wildlife struggle to coexist in a sustainable and healthy manner.

With 354 participants from 31 countries, the inaugural conference was a resounding success and led to Pathways becoming the leading conference of its kind in the world over the next decade. Plenary speakers included Richard Knight (Colorado State University), Douglas Inkley (National Wildlife Federation), Ben Bobowksi (Rocky Mountain National Park), and Therese Johnson (Rocky Mountain National Park).

Pathways is international in scope, with 30+ different countries and over 50 agencies from across the globe regularly represented at our conferences. Based on positive input received from attendees we continue to reach out to a diverse audience to increase professionalism and effectiveness in the human dimensions of fisheries and wildlife management field.

click here to learn more about our flagship pathways conference in Estes Park, colorado.