Urban Lights is a collection of stories and learnings from across the country, showcasing the breadth and depth of innovative work in the urban sphere from coast to coast. The programs and partnerships featured here illustrate a variety of relationships between public lands and urban communities. These stories shine a light on new approaches to working and illuminate a path forward for parks and programs working in urban areas.
As the Service aspires to meet its Centennial goals, it is now time that the NPS strategically organizes its many parks and programs to build relevancy for all Americans. As the Urban Agenda was developed, many National Park Service employees and partners shared their pioneering stories that embrace the urban mission as a critical component of our second century of National Park stewardship. The Agenda calls all urban park practitioners to embrace three bold principles:
- Activate "ONE NPS"
- Nurture a Culture of Collaboration
Expanding Horizons: Highlights from the National Workshop on Large Landscape Conservation 2014
Expanding Horizons summarizes the National Workshop on Large Landscape Conservation. The report stresses a multi-disciplinary, networked approach to finding solutions that benefit human, wildlife, cultural and ecological health. The report was developed by QLF Atlantic Center through a cooperative agreement with the National Park Service Stewardship Institute.
Scaling Up: Collaborative Approaches to Large Landscape Conservation, 2014
Published jointly by NPS Chesapeake Bay Office and NPS Stewardship Institute
This publication contains a collection of 20 examples of parks, programs and initiatives that are already working at landscape scale. The sampling represents varied sizes, complexities, geography, and vision. They show that large landscape conservation is not new to the National Park Service. As the pace of change quickens, and the need grows, more and more parks and partners are answering the call to "scale up" their efforts.
Beyond Outreach Handbook: A Guide to Designing Effective Programs to Engage Diverse Communities, 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 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.
Stronger Together: A Manual on the Principles and Practices of Civic Engagement, 2009
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.
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
Stewardship Begins With People: An Atlas of Places, People & Handmade Products, 2007 (Paper copies only. Request copies from: e-mail us) 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.
Learning to be Better Neighbors: Case Studies in Civic Engagement between National Parks and Neighboring Communities, 2006
This handbook discusses five different models of civic engagement, and uses case studies (“success stories”) to illustrate how people worked together to create effective community–public land initiatives. Each case study includes a set of “success factors” that can help guide others interested in learning about effective community engagement.
Opportunities for Communities that Neighbor Public Lands: A Guide to Federal Programs, 2006 The information that follows provides brief descriptions of federal funding and technical assistance programs available to communities that neighbor public lands.
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, Full Report. This technical assistance report was prepared by the Conservation Study Institute in cooperation with QLF/Atlantic Center for the Environment at the request (in 2005) of the Delaware & Lehigh NHA Commission
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. In 2004, the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission (Commission) initiated the Blackstone Sustainability Study to evaluate the past 18 years of work in the National Heritage Corridor (Corridor) and use this as a foundation for a dialogue about future management of the Corridor.
Collaboration and Conservation: Lessons Learned from National Park Service Partnership Areas in the Western United States, 2004
This workshop report distills partnership lessons learned and key components of successful partnership areas from a diversity of federal and private practitioners and examination of a series of case studies. The participants also identify a set of strategic recommendations for creating a sustainable environment for partnerships.
Last updated: January 28, 2019