A growing number of environmental professionals are realizing that equitable and meaningful engagement of local community members in the development of programming is essential for catalyzing the durable, long-term action needed to conserve biodiversity. Many who attempt to co-design programs with (not for) communities find that choosing the most effective strategies to accomplish this task is crucial and can often times feel daunting. In this webinar, we will identify 5 psychological principles professionals can use as guide posts and describe how participatory research strategies have been effectively implemented by organizations to engage their surrounding communities in the co-design of locally relevant conservation programming.
Presenters: Daria Keys and Kayla Cranston
Kayla Cranston is Director of Conservation Psychology Strategy and Integration at Antioch University New England. Kayla applies her expertise in long-term behavior change working across cultures in biodiversity conservation and has most extensively implemented participatory research strategies to foster durable behavior change toward conservation in the zoo and aquarium world.
Daria Keys was raised between two economically and racially divided neighborhoods in the urban, Midwestern United States. She grew up wanting to know why there was such a stark difference between her two communities. In 2019, Daria was recruited to serve as an AmeriCorps research associate at a local conservation organization where she would help shape the questions and methods guiding the organization’s co-design of education programming with her community. The resulting programs will have continued positive impact on her community and have strengthened the organization’s capacity to engage in mutually-beneficial dialogue with the community they serve. .
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