Examination of participant perceptions in the public participation process: wood bison restoration project in Alaska, United States

Bethany Downer

Memorial University

Bethany is a 21 year-old student studying from Newfoundland at Memorial University, currently completing the final year to her Bachelor of Science degree with a major in geography. In 2015, Bethany was awarded one of the University’s Student Summer Internship Program (USSIP) grants which allowed her to join Alistair Bath's wood bison reintroduction project research team in Alaska during the summer months. Here, she sought to complete undergraduate research that would prove as an integral learning experience for future academic initiatives as she progresses through her graduate degree. Her research draws from interest in public involvement and citizen participation, which she integrated through the evaluation of the public participation process by interviewing the representatives of all interest groups who played a role in the production of the wood bison management plan. Bethany is proud to have worked with Dr. Alistair Bath and is grateful for the experience she has gained in the human dimensions in wildlife management field.


After 170 years of statewide extinction, wood bison were reintroduced to the state of Alaska in spring 2015. Public participation initiatives are not often employed in wildlife reintroduction efforts, often leading to future... [ view full abstract ]


  1. Bethany Downer (Memorial University)
  2. Alistair Bath (Memorial University)
  3. Ethan Doney (Memorial University)
  4. Flavia Franchini-Silveira (Memorial University)

Topic Areas

Topics: Working with the Public , Topics: Collaborative Fish and Wildlife Management , Topics: Community-Based Conservation


OS-F3 » Community Perceptions of Re-Introduction (14:00 - Tuesday, 12th January, Colobus)

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