Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism: Discussing Interpretation of National Parks

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  • DATE / TIME:
    2017•05•13    13:00 - 16:30

    UNU-IAS, the Ministry of the Environment of Japan (MOEJ), the Association for Interpretation Japan, and the Global Environmental Outreach Centre (GEOC) will organize a public Symposium on Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism: Discussing Interpretation in National Parks to celebrate the UN International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB).

    Every year, commemorative ceremonies for the IDB are held all over the world to increase awareness and understanding of biodiversity issues. This year’s international theme for the IDB is “Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism”. The theme coincides with the observance of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.

    In light of this, the event will highlight the concept of interpretation with regard to national parks, which serve as necessary communications tools for educating visitors about nature while focusing on the locality and providing enjoyable experiences. The event will feature experts from the United States National Park Services, for which interpretation has become an important element of its brand. It also will offer the opportunity to learn from them about the organization’s planning, human resources development, and systems for facility management. In addition, discussion will include the implications of tourism for biological diversity and the SDGs.


    The event will be held in English and Japanese, with simultaneous translation provided. To register, please click here.


    13:00 Remarks from Emcee  

      Tsunao Watanabe, Senior Programme Coordinator, UNU-IAS; Director, OUIK

    13:05 Opening Remarks  

      Natsumi Higa, Parliamentary Vice-Minister of the Environment

    13:10 Video Message  

      Cristiana Pasca Palmer, Executive Secretary, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)

    13:15 Keynote Speeches

    • Todd Hisaichi, Park Ranger (Interpretation)/Volunteer Coordinator, US National Park Service
    • Masahito Yoshida, Professor of World Heritage Studies, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, University of Tsukuba

    14:15 Presentations

    • Maia Browning, Formerly of US National Park Service, Learning and Development Division
    • Yumi Ishizaki, Representative Director, Project WAVE/Hachijo Town Council Member
    • Koji Furuse, Professor, Teikyo University of Science; Representative Director, Association for Interpretation Japan

    14:50 Break

    15:05 Panel Discussion


      Tadashi Kawashima, President of the Japan Environmental Education Forum


    • Todd Hisaichi
    • Masahito Yoshida
    • Maia Browning
    • Yumi Ishizaki
    • Koji Furuse
    • Tsunao Watanabe
    • Jack Spinnler, Former Park Ranger and Park Planner, US National Park Service
    • Hitoshi Nishimura, Professor, Faculty of Human Environmental Studies, Hiroshima Shudo University
    • Naohisa Okuda, Head of Natural Environment Planning Department, Natural Environment Division, Ministry of the Environment
    • Eiko Okawa, Section Chief, Wildlife Division, Nature Conservation Bureau, Ministry of the Environment

    16:25 Closing Remarks

      Representative of the Ministry of the Environment


    Ministry of the Environment of Japan
    Association for Interpretation Japan
    Global Environmental Outreach Centre (GEOC)


    Japan Committee for United Nations Decade on Biodiversity(UNDB-J)
    Rikkyo University Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Research Center
    Japan Office of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)


    Association for Interpretation Japan
    TEL 03-6868-5499 

  • Programme

    (1.5 MB PDF)


    United Nations University
    Elizabeth Rose Hall (5F)
    5-53-70 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo