Wild Solutions: Overcoming Human-Wildlife Conflict Issues

CTEC 6th Annual Symposium

Francine Madden, MS, MPA

Executive Director, Human-Wildlife Conflict Collaboration

Francine Madden brings over fifteen years of inter-disciplinary experience working on human-wildlife conflict and other aspects of community-based wildlife and natural resource conservation. Recognizing the value of integrating inter-disciplinary and multi-sectoral perspectives into conservation, Ms. Madden is pioneering efforts to bring expertise and lessons learned from the conflict resolution field into the work of Human Wildlife Conflict Collaboration (HWCC) as well as efforts to integrate human rights and public interest law perspectives into the efforts to resolve conservation and wildlife conflicts.

Prior to launching the HWCC in November, 2006, Ms. Madden designed a human-gorilla conflict mitigation project to address human-mountain gorilla conflict in the three African countries (Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda) in which this species exists. She has counseled governments, such as Bhutan, Brazil and Uganda, on a variety of human-wildlife conflict issues, including: strategies for addressing livestock depredation; development of appropriate national HWC management policy; and the applicability and appropriateness of a variety of tools and techniques to mitigate HWC. Through her work with the African Wildlife Foundation, World Wildlife Fund and the U.S. Department of the Interior, Ms. Madden developed and managed conservation projects and international technical assistance and training programs in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. She has also conducted research and led efforts to foster greater understanding about and explore the linkages between human cultures and our natural environment.

Ms. Madden developed the first global assessment of compensation schemes used to mitigate human-wildlife conflict in and around protected areas. She has organized and facilitated several international, national and regional workshops on HWC, including the 2004 Bhutan National Tiger Action Plan conference, HWC workshops at the 5th World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa and the 2004 World Conservation Congress in Bangkok, Thailand, and an African multi-country conflict mitigation and prevention workshop.
Ms. Madden has two master’s degrees from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University and is the author of numerous publications and presentations on various aspects of human-wildlife conflict, conservation conflict, and the human element of conservation work.

Human Wildlife Conflict Collaboration

Philip Nyhus, PhD

Environmental Studies Department, Colby College

I am an assistant professor of Environmental Studies at Colby College. I teach or co-teach a range of courses, including Environment and Society, Introduction to GIS and Remote Sensing, Environmental Policy, Endangered Species Policy and Practice,and Environmental Policy Practicum.

My interdisciplinary research bridges the natural and social sciences to address human interactions with the environment. I am particularly interested in human-wildlife conflict and endangered species conservation. My current research addresses tiger and large mammal conservation in Asia and the United States. I have published over 20 scholarly articles and book chapters and am currently co-editing Tigers of the World: The Biology, Politics and Conservation of Panthera tigris.

I received M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Land Resources from the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. From 1999 to 2001 I was a National Science Foundation Award for the Integration of Research and Education postdoctoral fellow at Colby College. From 2001 to 2004 I was Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania.

Courtesy: Colby College

Dr. Ronald W. Abrams, PhD

CEP, Dru Associates, Inc., Long Island University

Dr. Ron Abrams was born in New York City in 1950, graduated Washington and Lee University in 1972 and traveled to Africa in 1974, working in east and central Africa until taking a research position in marine and coastal ecology in Cape Town, South Africa, at the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology. In his academic career, Dr. Abrams has performed ecological research in the Caribbean, in East and South Africa and throughout the northeastern United States. Dr. Abrams activities in Africa have included ecological surveys and sociological studies of tribal regions, spending time in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Swaziland, Lesotho and Botswana, and in the oceans between Africa and Antarctica. Dr. Abrams retains his involvement with the conservation of Africa’s natural resources through the Society for Conservation Biology, as a Board member for the Society’s Africa Section.

In 1986, Dr. Abrams joined Dru Associates after a time with New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation, where he was a Regional Supervisor in New York City and Long Island, responsible for mapping wetlands, managing wildlife, and monitoring the recovery of endangered species, particularly the Peregrine Falcon. Since entering the private sector, Dr. Abrams’ firm has offered scientific expertise in ecology and impact assessment to a wide variety of clients, with research specializations in wetlands, coastal zones, endangered species, herpetofauna, birds and habitat restoration. The firm has also been engaged by municipal and County governments as an on-call expert in environmental management. During the past 23 years, the firm has created nature preserves (e.g., Endangered Species, Tiger Salamander, Riverhead, Long Island), reconfigured major marinas (e.g. Capri Marina, Manhasset Bay, Long Island) and assisted in research supporting major energy delivery projects (e.g. Islander East Pipeline, Connecticut-Long Island). Presently, Dr. Abrams is performing conservation research for the Lake George (NY) Watershed, Suffolk County DPW and the Town of Riverhead on Long Island, all in support of regional master planning for endangered species, water quality and wetland protection. Currently, the firm is monitoring the endangered Tiger salamander and Short Eared Owl on Long Island with NYS DEC.
Dr. Abrams teaches in the Biology Department and Environmental Science Graduate Program of Long Island University, CW Post Campus. He also serves on the Review Board of the Academy of Board Certified Environmental Professionals, and has provided scientific guidance for Federal government officials through the Society for Conservation Biology in Washington, DC. In recent years, Dr. Abrams has been providing scientific guidance to global interests, with work in China, Kenya, Ghana and South Africa.