Communicating the Value of ACG, InvestigadoresACG Open House 2015


Attendees of the 2015 IACG Open House at Estación Experimental Forestal Horizontes

On June 2nd and 3rd, 2015, over 80 biologists, students, journalists, and ACG and SINAC personnel gathered at the Horizontes Experimental Forestry Research

Station for the second Investigadores ACG open house, titled “Communicating the Value of the ACG.” The meeting featured 17 talks, a dozen posters, and a tour of ongoing field projects at Horizontes led by director Milena Gutierrez. Horizontes was truly the star of the show. Many people got to know the Horizontes Experimental Forestry Research Station and its impressive facilities for the first time. Many more gained a much deeper appreciation for the breadth of active research, restoration, and outreach efforts that have taken place there as well as the many ongoing projects.

The importance of a site that is tightly connected to a conserved wildland, but in which manipulative research can be performed, was emphasized over and over again and visitors saw first hand both the internal and outward-looking benefits of this association. Internally, the existence of Horizontes allows for models of management to be explored and tested outside of the confines of the national park. To the world outside of the protected areas, Horizontes is dedicated to developing the knowledge, the techniques, and even the raw materials for the development of forestry as an economic activity in the dry lowlands of Costa Rica. The combination of restoration and forestry, separate missions sharing a common research foundation, makes Horizontes a unique research site with Costa Rica.

Several talks and activities directly related to the theme of “Communicating the Value of the ACG.” During work group sessions participants worked in teams to develop “value propositions” that the ACG offers to different user groups, using the tools of the Business Model Canvas to move beyond thinking about products and services and into thinking about how particular products and services create user value. This theme of expanding the influence of scientific knowledge beyond the realm of academic science was also emphasized by talks from various ACG programs. Members of the Biological Education Program (PEB) described their efforts to systematize the procedures that they have developed over their history. The Ecotourism program described their initiative to create new trails and interpretive centers in Santa Rosa and Rincón de la Vieja. Roger Blanco of the investigation program spoke on the theme of “Biodesarrollo,” and recapped the history of ways in which the ACG has created new value in both local and global communities.

Another ACG initiative that was highlighted was the “Virtual Encyclopedia” or digital repository of the ACG. Participants were presented with the current state of COPA, the working name of the ACG repository. and were walked through some of the ways in which we expect that this resource can facilitate interactions among ACG  researchers, between researchers and ACG staff, and between the ACG community and the broader local and global user communities of the ACG. During this session we were also introduced to the new communications office of the ACG that is tasked with helping to create and maintain a culture of information sharing.

Finally, the Open House was rich in opportunities for face to face networking. One of the great strengths was the diversity of ongoing and past projects in the talks and posters. Participants built up their personal networks, identified opportunities for future collaboration, and learned more about the physical, human, and intellectual resources that currently exist within the ACG.

Taken together, these activities served to strengthen the network that is at the heart of the IACG mission. Furthermore, we formed a number of new connections with the attendance of researchers and SINAC employees from other Conservation Areas. In the future we hope that by harnessing their perspectives we can broaden the reach and utility of IACG. IACG was always meant to be a set of techniques and technologies that could be exported to new contexts, hopefully the outcome of this meeting represents a first step in that direction.

Download the complete report

Talks, Slides and Videos:

Avances de estudios fenológicos en cortéz amarillo (Handroanthus ochraceus) y el árbol de Guanacaste (Enterolobium cyclocarpum) Jorge Arturo Lobo Segura- Universidad de Costa Rica video 

Cadena trófica de las bromelias en un clima cambiante Diane Srivastava, Sarah Amundrud y el Bromeliad Working Group – University of British Columbia video 

Diversidad y función de plantas en los Cerros de la Península de Santa Elena Catherine Hulshof – Universidad de Puerto Rico Mayagüez

Cultivo de especies nativas, una estrategia sostenible de conservación Olman Murillo, Yorleny Badilla, Gustavo Torres, Dorian Carvajal, Rodolfo Canessa – Escuela de Ingeniería Forestal Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica video 

Biodesarrollo del ACG a través del conocimiento científico  Roger Blanco Segura – Área de Conservación Guanacaste video 

Monitoreo a largo plazo del bosque natural del Parque Nacional Guanacaste: estudio sobre dinámica y composición Luis Gustavo Hernández Sánchez – UNA INISEFOR video 

Sistematización del Programa de Educación Biológica,1986-2015: Bioalfabetizando mediante experiencias en una biblioteca natural  Gabriela Gutiérrez Ruiz y Pablo Vazques Badilla – Área de Conservación Guanacaste video 

Incendios forestales e indices de vegetación Mauricio Vega-Araya – UNA INISEFOR video 

Dinámica del temperamento ecológico de tres estadios sucesionales de bosque natural en tres sitios del Parque Nacional Guanacaste William Montero Flores – UNA INISEFOR video 

Proyectos de organización turística y mejoras en la oferta del ACG: Casos Rincón de la Vieja y Santa Rosa Juan Carlos Carillo – Area de Conservación Guanacaste video 

Memorias de investigación del Parque Nacional Barra Honda. Un análisis general de los avances y acontecimientos más recientes Eduardo Artavia Durán – Projects Abroad video 

Murciélagos del Parque Nacional Barra Honda Oscar Cubero Vázquez – Projects Abroad

Natural regeneration during secondary succession in tropical seasonally dry forests Geraldine Derroire – Bangor University video 

Experiencias y aplicaciones de la restauración de bosques en ACG Milena Gutiérrez – Area de Conservación Guanacaste video 

Baseflow, serpentinization, and life: a review of geochemical and hydrological processes within the ACG region Ricardo Sánchez – Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica

Conservación del Tiburón toro (Carcharhinus leucas) en el Pacífico Norte de Costa Rica Andrés López G. – Asociación Misión Tiburón

Construyendo una enciclopedia de ACG: Federico Matarrita – Usematics video 

Dinámica de los ecosistemas forestales de bosque seco en Costa Rica y su impacto en las poblaciones de abejas nativas: protección de polinizadores y plantas hospederas asociadas Henry Mauricio Sánchez Toruño – UNA INISEFOR

This post is also available in: Spanish

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