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April 2013 Milstein Science Symposium: Understanding Ecological and Social Resilience in Island Systems: Informing Policy and Sharing Lessons for Management

Islands Symposium

AMNH CBC/F. Arengo


Case studies inspired by the 2013 Milstein Science Symposium are now available! Visit the Case Studies page to download.


In Spring 2013, the American Museum of Natural History's Center for Biodiversity and Conservation together with partners organized a three-day symposium that unites local resource managers, researchers, educators, island leaders, policy makers, and other leading conservation practitioners to present and analyze real-world resilience case studies.  Central to the symposium is understanding resilience - the ability of ecological and social systems to absorb, resist, or recover from stressors and adapt to change while maintaining critical ecosystem functions and benefits.

Island ecosystems present unique challenges for conservation due to distinctive ecological and evolutionary processes and vulnerability to threats.  The Milstein Science Symposium explored case studies that exemplify responses to disturbance of change in order to elucidate patterns and processes that foster resilience.  Through sharing lessons learned and fostering networks of island managers that are addressing similar challenges, the symposium deepened manager insight into how to promote the resilience of coastal systems, particularly in tropical small island nations, as well as strengthen networks among island leaders, international scientists, and policy makers, paving the way for ongoing collaboration in the future.

The Milstein Science Symposium is proudly sponsored by the Irma and Paul Milstein Family.


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AGENDA DAY ONE

TUESDAY, APRIL 9, 2013

SESSION I: Moderated by Eleanor Sterling, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History 

9:00 INTRODUCTION TO PROGRAM
Ellen V. Futter, American Museum of Natural History
Howard P. Milstein, Paul & Irma Milstein Foundation 

Eleanor Sterling, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History
Jenny Newell, Pacific Ethnology, Division of Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History

9:15 KEYNOTE PRESENTATION

Navigating an era of unprecedented change: the rise of resilience and its importance to islands
Paul Marshall, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA)
Nadine Marshall, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO)

10:00 INVITED TALKS

Socio-ecological resilience in Pacific Island traditional and contemporary contexts
Stacy Jupiter, Wildlife Conservation Society

Environmental displacement and cultural resilience: the Banabans of Ocean Island and Rabi
Katerina Teaiwa, Australian National University

SESSION II: Moderated by Petra MacGowan, Global Marine Program, The Nature Conservancy

11:15 CASE STUDY PRESENTATIONS

Supporting resilient systems in the Bay Islands, Honduras
Jenny Myton, Coral Reef Alliance

An integrated framework for assessing and managing data-limited fish stocks
Kendra Karr, Environmental Defense Fund

Managing for resilience using directed monitoring efforts and community engagement at the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA)
Russell Sparks, Division of Aquatic Resources, State of Hawaii

Managing identity in the midst of globalization
Mae Adams, Micronesia Program, The Nature Conservancy 

12:10 LUNCH AND WORKING GROUPS

SESSION III: Moderated by Jenny Newell, Pacific Ethnology, Division of Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History

2:00 PANEL DISCUSSION

What is the role of science in managing for resilience?
Eleanor Sterling (Moderator), Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History
Mae Adams, The Nature Conservancy
Tadzio Bervoets, St. Maarten Nature Foundation
Sangeeta Mangubhai, Indonesia Marine Program, The Nature Conservancy
Hinano Teavai Murphy, Gump Research Station, University of California Berkeley 
Hugh Possingham, University of Queensland, Australia and the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University
Stuart Sandin, University of California, San Diego
Stephanie Wear, Global Marine Initiative, The Nature Conservancy

3:05 INVITED TALKS

Making it easier to manage reefs for resilience: a framework for interpretation of resilience assessment scores
Sangeeta Mangubhai, The Nature Conservancy

Building reef resilience capacity at a local scale
Naneng Setiasih, Coral Reef Alliance 

4:05 CASE STUDY PRESENTATIONS

Ecological and social resilience in island systems: case study of Lakshadweep
Vineeta Hoon, Centre for Action Research on Environment Science and Society, India

Integrated indigenous management of Land and Marine Protected Areas in Taiarapu, Tahiti
Tokainiua Devatine, Centre de Recherches Insulaires et Observatoire de l'Environnement (CRIOBE) 

4:30 PANEL DISCUSSION

Resilience in the Solomon Islands: Common threads, trade-offs, and unanticipated outcomes
Christopher Filardi (moderator), Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History
Simon Albert, University of Queensland, Australia
Matthew Lauer, San Diego State University
Senoveva Mauli, The Nature Conservancy, Solomon Islands
Patrick Pikacha, University of Queensland and Solomon Islands Community Conservation Partnership

5:30 RECEPTION AND POSTER SESSION, Milstein Hall of Ocean Life
Poster abstracts can be found here.

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DAY TWO
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 10, 2013
(All keynotes, invited talks, and case study presentations take place in the Kaufmann Theater) 

SESSION IV: Moderated by Christopher Filardi, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History

9:00 DAY ONE RECAP AND INTRODUCTION TO DAY TWO 
Eleanor Sterling, Director, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History
Jenny Newell (Event Co-Chair), Assistant Curator, Pacific Ethnology, Division of Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History

9:15 INVITED TALKS

Evolutionary processes fostering resilience on islands
Scott V. Edwards, Harvard University

Prioritizing conservation actions for island marine ecosystems
Hugh Possingham, University of Queensland, Australia and School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University

SESSION V: Moderated by Susan Perkins, Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History

10:00 CASE STUDY PRESENTATIONS

Speyside Marine Area community based management project - a case study for socio-ecological resilience in Tobago (Southern Caribbean)
Jahson Alemu, Institute of Marine Affairs, Trinidad and Tobago

Climate change adaptation: local solutions for a global problem in a popular tourism destination
Derta Prabuning, Reefcheck, Bali

Coral reef resilience to climate change in Saipan, CNMI; field-based assessments and implications for vulnerability and future management
Steven Johnson, Division of Environmental Quality, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands

Notes from a floating island
Carlos Mondragon, Center for African and Asian Studies, El Colegio de Mexico

SESSION VI: Moderated by Katherine Holmes, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History and Wildlife Conservation Society

Community-based adaptation in the Pacific Islands
Meghan Gombos, Sea Change Consulting, LLC

Community-based planning and mobilization in urbanized atolls: the Rita Reimaanlok case study
Tina Stege, Marshall Islands

Fostering resilience in coral reef and agricultural systems in Guanica, PR
Paul Sturm, Ridge to Reefs

The effects of natural disturbances, reef state, and herbivorous fish densities on ciguatera poisoning in Rarotonga, southern Cook Islands
Teina Rongo, Climate Change-Cook Islands Division, Office of the Prime Minister 

Incorporating local wisdom sasi into marine zoning to increase the resilience of a Marine Protected Area network in Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia
Purwanto, Coral Triangle/Indonesia, The Nature Conservancy (presented by Sangeeta Mangubhai)

12:30 LUNCH

SESSION VII: Moderated by Dan Brumbaugh, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History

2:00 INVITED TALK
Fostering manager voices to inform global policy
Peter Kenilorea, UN Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, and Small Island Developing States

2:15 PANEL DISCUSSION

Funding for resilience: perspectives from funders and grantees
Jeffrey Campbell (moderator), The Christensen Fund
Kate Barnes, MacArthur Foundation
Bernd Cordes, Paul G. Allen Family Foundation
Nayari Perez Diaz, Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT), Belize
Naneng Setiasih, Coral Reef Alliance 

3:45 WORKING GROUPS

5:30 PLENARY AND CLOSING REMARKS
Christopher Filardi, Director, Pacific Program, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History 

DAY THREE
THURSDAY, APRIL 11

Working Groups 

The symposium will provide a space for working groups to organize around specific topics relevant to resilience in island systems.  These groups will set goals for the discussion in order to generate tangible outputs.  Participants are invited to submit topics and facilitate discussions and are encouraged to sign up for working groups.

  • Social Sciences Working Group: Biologists and social scientists will explore the interplay between ecological and social resilience in the management context.
  • Policy Working Group: Participants will be introduced to some of the current, relevant global bodies addressing policy relating to islands and resilience issues.  The group will discuss themes that emerged through the symposium to draft policy recommendations.
  • Reefs Tomorrow Initiative Working Group: Researchers will introduce a project focused on factors contributing to reef resilience, including future opportunities for local research and conservation partnerships.  Managers and other conservation practitioners will discuss management challenges they face converting science to action; what actions are needed, requiring what science?  Managers will also share their perspectives on information they would need in order to manage better for resilience on reefs. 

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