Partnering to save our world

Dr. Farrell giving talkProtecting the planet isn’t easy. Proposed solutions are as bountiful and diverse as the problems they seek to address, ranging from expensive technological solutions like CO2 capture to small, behavioral changes like eating less meat. As the largest public university in the country, Arizona State University is not short on ideas – but recognizes the need for collaboration to drive new research and innovation. Conservation International’s Tracy Farrell is one such collaborator partnering with ASU to fight to save the world. The VP of Strategies and Fundraising for Asia Pacific visited ASU Downtown in March 2019 to meet with students, faculty and give guest lectures on her work. Her public lecture, titled “Collaborative conservation: Weaving universities and non-profits together in the fight to save our planet,” outlined why prominent NGO’s like CI work with higher education to drive science, access students and foster innovation. “Introducing rigor and new practices into our conservation action on the ground has been a real bonus for CI in our relationship with ASU,” Farrell said, referring to the institutional partnership that began between ASU and CI in September 2016. Farrell was invited to ASU by Center for Sustainable Tourism Director Christine Vogt and Associate Professor Megha Burdruk. The three women collaborated on a workshop to develop a sustainable tourism proposal in Indonesia in April 2018. “The partnership with ASU and Asia Pacific countries with CI is just getting going, but it has already been instrumental in helping to frame some of our work in Samoa, Bali and in Timor-Leste,” Farrell said. “We are partnering on setting up tourism fees, engaging graduate students, and hope to continue to learn and grow our work together over time. The public talk was attended by approximately 35 students and faculty and co-sponsored by the Center for Biodiversity Outcomes. Farrell also spoke with students from David White and Gyan Nyaupane’s graduate classes. “CI is a perfect partner with ASU, particularly CST, to work on science initiatives that are coupled with practice for the benefit of communities, visitors, and the environment,” Vogt said.  “Tracy Farrell’s visit provided dialogue with students and faculty to dream big about tourism being an important element of all our efforts.” The ASU-CI partnership seeks to protect nature, promote sustainable development and train the next generation of conservation leaders. For further questions, please contact the ASU-CI Relationship Manager Amy Scoville-Weaver at [email protected]. [Written by Amy Scoville-Weaver]