Jessica Brown, M.A.

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Jessica Brown, M.A. (Chair, 2016-2017) focuses on stewardship of biocultural landscapes, civic engagement in conservation, and governance of protected areas. Her concern with biocultural diversity grows out of this work, recognizing that the landscape is both source and expression of the biocultural diversity of life. Over the past two decades, she has worked with community-based conservation projects in countries of the Caribbean, Mesoamerica, Andean South America, Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans.  Jessica is Executive Director of the New England Biolabs Foundation, an independent, private foundation whose mission is to foster community-based conservation of landscapes and seascapes and the bio-cultural diversity found in these places. Prior to that she was Senior Vice President for International Programs with the Quebec-Labrador Foundation/Atlantic Center for the Environment (QLF), responsible for its capacity-building and peer-to-peer exchange activities in diverse regions, and a founding partner of the US National Park Service’s Conservation Study Institute. She is currently consulting with the UNDP/Global Environmental Facility Small Grants Programme and its Community Management of Protected Areas for Conservation (COMPACT) initiative. A member of IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA), Jessica chairs its Protected Landscapes Specialist Group, a global working group that advises on policy and management issues related to biocultural landscapes and serves as a platform for qualitative research and dissemination of case-study experience. Recent publications include The Protected Landscape Approach: Linking Nature, Culture and Community, and the launch of a new series on Values of Protected Landscapes and Seascapes, exploring the agro-biodiversity, wild biodiversity, cultural and spiritual values of these areas. She received an M.A. in International Development from Clark University, and a B.A. in Biology and Environmental Studies from Brown University.

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