Ecosystem-based management experts working in diverse settings in the United States and beyond will speak at the 26th International Congress for Conservation Biology in Baltimore on Thursday, July 25, 2013, about what the field can learn from projects already underway, what difference such integrated management efforts are making, and what the future of research and practice in this area should be. “Ecosystem-scale restoration efforts, particularly in the wake of Superstorm Sandy and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, highlight the often fragmented management of these vulnerable and highly valued ecosystems,” said Brown conservation scientist Heather Leslie, who co-organized the 8 a.m. symposium with colleague Karen McLeod of COMPASS. There is no single way to advance ecosystem-based management, Leslie said, based on her six-site investigation of ecosystem-based management projects in the United States, Mexico, and the Pacific island region. “Our results highlight the diversity of ecosystem-based strategies people have employed in the United States and around the world, as well as some of the common challenges that arise. By combining research approaches from multiple disciplines, we are much better able to learn from these efforts and more effectively sustain coastal marine ecosystems in the future.” In addition to Leslie, other speakers include experts from COMPASS, the University of Michigan, SeaPlan, the Nature Conservancy, and the University of Washington.

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