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Conservation | Landscapes

The conservation of landscapes is not without its challenges. National Parks, World Heritage Areas and other protected areas have seen attempts at formalising conservation initiatives, too often at the expense of local communities who see their cultural values and attachments to landscapes become secondary to the protection function. Thankfully these ideas are shifting now, and communities/local people are seen as being an important, if not crucial, part of the conservation equation in landscapes.


This portfolio focuses on national parks, world heritage areas and community-led conservation initiatives.

Communities | Landscapes

One of the really important shifts in thinking about landscapes has been recognising that people and communities are part of them. Because they are, they have incredibly important roles to play in conservation and sustainability of the landscapes where they live, and there are lessons to be learned which are important for all landscapes.

Rivers | Wetlands | Lakes

Water is crucial to all landscapes, even those in deserts that come to life when their irregular rain arrives. People in landscapes are dependent on water – for drinking, for agriculture, for production for example.


Water also provides a means by which people move through their landscapes. Ocean currents, rivers and lakes have provided the paths for exploration, trade and livelihood security for all time.

Forests | Trees

Something I’ve always been interested in is the multiple understandings of what forests are – something to be harvested, something to be protected, something to live in, something where the spirits of ancestors protect people and communities. They’re a repository for medicinal plants, as well as providing diverse ecosystems for all living things. Then there’s their role in mitigating the impacts of climate change.

Sunrise | Sunset

The beginning and end of the day – new beginnings, new endings and displays of light. I’m always amazed at the variety of yellows, oranges and reds that can be on display.

Mountains | Valleys

Mountains are the repository of both cultural and natural heritage, even though this is a somewhat artificial separation between nature and culture. They provide livelihoods for  thousands of people around the world, and are significant in the protection of ecosystems. The Himalayas – the ‘third pole’ – are currently hotspots in terms of the impacts of climate change, geo-political tensions and the maintenance of these livelihood rights. National parks with their conservation aims, and tourism through trekking and spiritual journeys all speak of these tensions.