Conservation Study Institute
National Park Service

Conservation and Stewardship Publication Series

Beyond Outreach cover CSI #21 Beyond Outreach Handbook: A Guide to Designing Effective Programs to Engage Diverse Communities (PDF 798KB), 2011
Engaging the full spectrum of Americans in the stewardship of our parks and special places is now recognized as crucial to the future of our national park system. This handbook represents an important new tool to assist National Park Service (NPS) managers and practitioners and their partners in developing programs that successfully connect diverse communities with their local national parks. It guides practitioners through an assessment that identifies gaps in readiness and informs the development of an effective engagement strategy. The handbook is based on a research project that probed what constitutes good practices for engaging diverse communities and enhancing the relevancy of the national park system.

CSI #20 Qualitative Evaluation of the Superintendents Leadership Roundtable: Full Report (PDF 491KB) Executive Summary (PDF 447KB), 2010
The Superintendents Leadership Roundtable (SLR) is a service-wide leadership development program managed by the NPS Conservation Study Institute in cooperation with Regional Directors and an advisory group of participating superintendents, and more recently with the Learning and Development Office. In 2009, at the time of the evaluation, the program served approximately 100 superintendents – reaching all seven regions and about 25% of the agency’s nearly 400 field leaders. Each of the eight cohort groups of 14 park superintendents meets annually and includes a mix of geography and level of experience.

Engaging Young Adults cover
CSI #19 Engaging Young Adults in a Sustainable Future: Strategies for National Parks and Other Special Places, 2009 (PDF 3.7 MB)
The purpose of this project was to inform the National Park Foundation’s (NPF) program development strategy for engaging young adults age 18 to 25 in environmental sustainability through collaboration with national parks and their partners and communities. This project positions the NPF to capitalize on research- and experienced-based knowledge about engaging young adults in the design of new initiatives. Program development for this key age group is an essential part of the NPF’s overall strategy of engaging the full spectrum of youth audiences.

CSI #18 Communication Strategies that Promote Ocean Stewardship Action: A Booklet for Interpreters and Educators, 2010 (PDF 264 KB)
This booklet is a direct result of a June 2009 workshop on “Ocean Literacy and Stewardship Messages. Its purpose is to share key lessons learned and key concepts developed, thereby helping agencies and their partners shape effective communications to foster public awareness and ocean stewardship. It is not meant to be a final, definitive work, but rather a foundation for further collaboration and development of more-refined programs to engage and motivate people to take action on behalf of our oceans.

Leading in a Collaborative Environment cover
CSI #17 Leading in a Collaborative Environment: Six Case Studies Involving Collaboration and Civic Engagement, 2010 (PDF 1.2 MB)
The case studies address some of the most challenging situations facing NPS superintendents today. In addition to being useful to managers at various levels within the NPS, the case studies and the common leadership strategies and practices are also relevant to conservation practitioners outside of the NPS working in similar situations.

Stronger Together cover

CSI #16 Stronger Together: A Manual on the Principles and Practices of Civic Engagement, 2009 (PDF - 1.0MB)
In recent years, the NPS and its partners have undertaken various activities that have led to a deeper reflection on the importance of civic engagement in helping the public participate in dialogue and reflect on the value of American places and their resources and stories. The cumulative learning from these activities has informed this manual.

CSI #15
Shared Legacies in Cane River National Heritage Area: Linking People, Traditions, and Landscapes. A Technical Assistance Report for the Cane River National Heritage Area Commission Report, 2008 (PDF - 4.5 MB)  

CSI #14 Stewardship Begins With People: An Atlas of Places, People & Handmade Products, 2007 (Paper copies only. Request copies from: This report marks the culmination of a multi-year research project on heritage-based products that began with planning for the historic Mount Tom forest at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller NHP. Concurrent with these discussions, there has been growing interest in finding ways to enhance the cultural and economic sustainability of distinctive regional identities. Congress recently demonstrated its interest as well, asking the NPS to explore viable ways to encourage sale of traditional products in national parks. Several international exchanges with Italy and with the Czech Republic provided added stimulus and ideas for this Atlas.

CSI #13 –
Scholar’s Forum, The National Park Service and Civic Reflection: A Summary Report, 2006 (PDF - 15 MB,  download may be slow due to file size. To obtain paper copies email: On January 14, 2006, the National Park System Advisory Board’s Education Committee convened a forum of distinguished historians and sociologists to talk with NPS leaders about civic engagement; the place of national parks in our nation’s educational system; and how an NPS commitment to young people and education can strengthen civic awareness and stewardship in America. Present at the forum were members of the Advisory Board, (NPS) National Leadership Council, and representatives of the National Education Council (NPS) and other NPS leaders.

CSI #12 – Working Together for a Common Future:  The Community-Public Land Regional  Handbook, 2006 (PDF - 1.3 MB)
CSI #11– Learning to be Better Neighbors: Case Studies in Civic Engagement between National Parks and Neighboring Communities, 2006  (PDF - 631 KB) 

CSI #10 – Opportunities for Communities that Neighbor Public Lands: A Guide to Federal Programs, 2006 (PDF - 109 KB)  

CSI # 9 –
Connecting Stories, Landscapes, and People: Exploring the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor: Sustainability Study Report. A Technical Assistance Project for the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor Commission and the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor,  2006 Executive Summary (PDF - 742 KB) Full Report (PDF - 3.7 MB)  

CSI #8 –
Keeping National Parks Relevant in the 21st Century, 2006 (PDF - 1.1MB)  

CSI #7 –
Reflecting on the Past, Looking to the Future: Sustainability Study Report. A Technical Assistance Report to the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission,2005 (PDF -  1.8 MB)  

CSI #6 –
Collaboration and Conservation: Lessons Learned from National Park Service Partnership Areas in the Western United States, 2004(PDF - 1.5 MB)  

CSI #5 – A Handbook for Managers of Cultural Landscapes with Natural Resource Values, 2003(click here to view this web publication)  

CSI #4 –
Speaking of the Future: A Dialogue on Conservation, 2003 (PDF - 3.9 MB)  

CSI #3 –
Collaboration and Conservation: Lessons Learned in Areas Managed through National Park Service Partnerships, 2001Available in sections: cover (PDF - 320 KB);  text section 1 (PDF - 109 KB);  text section 2 (PDF - 94 KB); text section 3 (PDF - 190 KB); text section 4 (PDF - 196KB); text section 5 (PDF-  110KB); text section 6 (PDF - 105 KB)  

CSI #2 –
International Concepts in Protected Landscapes: Exploring Their Values  for Communities in the Northeast, 2001 (PDF - 620 KB)  

CSI #1 –
Landscape Conservation: An International Working Session on the Stewardship of Protected Landscapes, 2001 (PDF - 1,563 KB)  

Other Publications
(Request copies from:

Lessons Learned form the Massachusetts Area Parks Student Career Intake Program (SCIP), Year 1
(PDF only 2.19MB)

Engaging Young Adults in a Sustainable Future: Strategies for National Parks and Other Special Places
A Report to the National Park Foundation (PDF only 3.73MB)

The Future of Working Cultural Landscapes: Parks, Partners and Local Products
Full Report (PDF 3.2MB) Executive Summary (PDF 616KB)Evaluation Research to Support National Park Service 21st Century Relevancy Initiatives PowerPoint and Narrative

Quantifying a Relationship Between Place-based Learning and Environmental Quality
Executive Summary or Full Report   Learning Together: Proceedings, Evaluation, and Applying Lessons Learned, 2007 (PDF 12.9MB)  

Charting a Future for National Heritage Areas, 2006
  Conservation at the Landscape Scale” Special Issue, The George Wright Forum, vol. 22, no. 1, 2005  

Articles & Books