Large Scale Conservation

Exploring Challenges, Perspectives, and Opportunities in the Yellowstone to Yukon Case

Co-sponsors: Woodcock Foundation, Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, Kendall Foundation, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, The Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative, Wilburforce Foundation

Woodcock has collaborated on numerous occasions with conservation grantee and partner Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y) to explore opportunities to advance large scale conservation. In 2004, a workshop Woodcock co-sponsored with Kendall Foundation, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, The Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative brought together some of the best minds working on large-scale conservation issues, using the example of Y2Y, which is one of the highest profile, most referenced conservation efforts on the planet. Nearly two dozen leaders of environmental organizations from Canada and the U.S. spent two days assessing Y2Y’s progress and identifying what more needed to occur if large-scale conservation is to have a successful long-term effect. The workshop employed the Q method and was facilitated by Steve Brown of Kent State University and Kimberly Byrd of the University of Minnesota. The following year, Woodcock and the Wilburforce foundation gathered funders from the U.S. and Canada at several meetings to discuss ways to collaborate and leverage funds in support of conservation efforts in the Y2Y region. The meetings significantly increased investment by Canadian funders for Y2Y efforts in the Northern Rockies.

Over the fall and winter of 2007, Woodcock collaborated with Y2Y to produce a stocktaking report that rendered a probing overview at the ten-year mark of Y2Y as an organized effort to protect one of the world’s last relatively undisturbed landscapes. Rather than performing an impersonal “evaluation” using imprecise metrics, the stocktaking, undertaken by Dr. Mark Walters, DVM, and professor of journalism at the University of Southern Florida in St. Petersburg, was journalistic in tone and rich in human voices so as to convey the essence of Y2Y, not only as it exists on the ground but as it exists in the minds of Y2Y residents and outside observers. The goal was to provide readers – both those familiar and unfamiliar with Y2Y – the true story of the landscape: how it has evolved over the past decade, how its inhabitants relate to it and each other, and where it will be 100 years from now.