2023 Natural Areas Conference

2023 Natural Areas Virtual Conference. The Power of LTER. Thursday, November 2, 2023 11 A.M. - 4:30 P.M.

2023 Natural Areas Virtual Conference (NAC23)

The Power of Long Term Ecological Research (LTER): Informing natural areas management

Thursday, November 2, 2023 11 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST

This conference has concluded. NAA thanks all who attended and made this conference so special. We'll see you next year!

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Long Term Ecological Research Program (LTER) was established in 1980 to address ecological questions that cannot be resolved with short-term observations or experiments; emphasizing the study of ecological phenomena over long periods of time.

Long-term studies are essential to achieve an integrated understanding of how populations, natural communities and other components of ecosystems interact and are affected by management techniques and climate change. Getting this valuable science and research findings into the hands of those that can positively affect the conservation of critically important landscapes with an eye towards climate resilience are mutual goals of the National Science Foundation and the Natural Areas Association.

NAA, in partnership with the LTER Network, will highlight the important research being done within the LTER network that informs the practices of our land-management audience from around North America. LTER researchers will convey the findings of their studies that inform on-the-ground management decisions that affect biodiversity conservation and ecological health in the systems in which natural areas practitioners work.

The conference will feature LTER representatives from the following ecosystems:

The 2023 Natural Areas Conference - A One-day Virtual Event!


11:00 – 11:05 a.m.Welcome
11:05 – 11:20 a.m.2023 Annual Awards - Presentation Ceremony
Lisa Smith, Executive Director, Natural Areas Association
11:20 – 11:35 a.m.Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER): Informing ecosystem management
Lisa Smith, Executive Director, Natural Areas Association
11:35 - 12:05 p.m.An Overview of the Long-Term Ecological Research Network
Evelyn Gaiser, Ph.D., Distinguished University Professor of Biological Sciences, Florida International University
12:05 - 12:45 p.m.
Why Does the National Science Foundation (NSF) Invest in the LTER Program?
Allen J. Moore, Ph.D., Division Director, Division of Environmental Biology, National Science Foundation
12:45 - 1:05 p.m.Why Do LTERs Matter to Natural Areas Practitioners
Glenn Patrick Juday, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Forest Ecology, University of Alaska Fairbanks
1:05 - 1:15 p.m.Break & Transition to Breakout Sessions

Prairies & Grasslands




3:15 - 3:30 p.m.Break & Transition back to Plenary Session
3:30 - 4:00 p.m.Plenary Session - Reconvene
Learning Highlights/Group Discussion
4:00 - 4:30 p.m.Plenary Session: A Horizon of Opportunity: Preparing for collaboration as sustainability initiatives take root
Sunny Fleming, Industry Lead, Public Sector Environment, Esri
4:30 p.m.Conclusion

Thank You to our Partners!

U.S. Department of Interior - Bureau of Land Management logo
United States Forest Service logo
esri logo

Why is the 2023 Natural Areas Conference going to be virtual?

It was such a joy to gather our community of natural areas practitioners in Duluth, MN during September 2022. That said, sometimes an organization needs to take some time to calibrate - and that is what NAA will do in connection to the Natural Areas Conference. 

NAA’s goal is to be indispensable for those who steward natural areas. To create a single source where you can conveniently and affordably access reliable science and quality programming wherever you are located, wherever you are in your career, and wherever you are in your practice. 

Following an in-depth strategic planning effort, NAA determined that the needs of the natural areas stakeholder community are changing, and so are the economics of large in person events. As such, it was time to develop an updated conference business and program delivery model to better serve all of you and our organization. 

The in-person Natural Areas Conference will be back - better than ever - during Fall 2024!

More details will be posted about both the 2023 Natural Areas Conference One-Day Virtual Event & the 2024 Natural Areas Conference - In person!


Join the people who protect and manage our natural areas.