Policy Working Group

Enhancing Landscape Ecology’s role in Policy Making


Landscape ecologists investigate the interaction between human activities and the environment at many scales, from local to global. Landscape ecology thus offers critical and relevant information to policy makers, from municipalities to the United Nations, on many of the most critical policy issues of our time, including land use, air and water pollution, invasive species, and climate change. However, most policymakers and practitioners have little awareness of how insights from landscape ecology can improve policy development and implementation, chiefly because this knowledge is not easily accessible to them.
Landscape ecologists should be seen as a valuable resource for policy makers, and should endeavor to more fully collaborate with policy makers to ensure that information provided by researchers conforms to the needs and goals of policy makers. However, most researchers are typically not trained to provide guidance to policymakers and practitioners in a format they can use. The Policy Working Group promotes access to landscape ecology research findings for policymakers and practitioners.




Our goals are to:   

  • identify opportunities where the field of landscape ecology can inform policy related to pressing issues;
  • support landscape ecologists interested in translating their research results into policy;
  • collaborate with policy makers to identify key information needs that landscape ecologists can investigate;
  • encourage landscape ecologists to identify gaps between knowledge and existing policy;
  • support training for landscape ecologists to work in policy-related fields;
  • prepare reports and white papers in collaboration with other professional societies.

Upcoming events


2016: Africa IALE

Special Session on Integration of Landscape Ecology and Geospatial Technology for Sustainable Development of Urban Areas in Africa.
The session is organized by Africa-IALE during the International Conference of The African Association of Remote Sensing of The Environment (AARSE) from October 24-28, 2016 in Kampala, Uganda.

2017: US IALE

We will propose a “Policy and Landscape Ecology” symposium at the next meeting of the US-IALE in Baltimore, MD, USA in April 2017. The symposium will consist of talks given by invited speakers, followed by a panel discussion where invited speakers can discuss emerging questions:

  • In what ways has the field of landscape ecology specifically contributed to enacted policies? Missed opportunities? Low hanging fruit?
  • How are landscape ecologists informing policy at the local, regional, national, or global level? Please give examples.
  • How have policies stemming from LE research been misapplied or misinterpreted in the policy realm? Implications? Remedies?

Discussion with the audience will ensue.

Joining the group


All colleagues interested in contributing to our working group are welcome to contact us (see email addresses of committee chair and members below). We are especially seeking members who are involved in policy making and as such welcome planners, elected officials, and other practitioners to join our group.

Audrey Mayer ( - ChairJonathan Bossenbroek ( - MemberHenry Bulley ( - MemberBrian Buma ( – MemberAmelie Davis ( – MemberSarah Dumyahn ( - MemberMeg Krawchuk ( - MemberRob Scheller ( - MemberFiona Schmiegelow ( - MemberYolanda Wiersma ( - MemberScott Slocombe ( - MemberShane Orchard ( - Member



International Congress of Ecology and Civilization in a Changing World

IALE-Europe Ph.D. course Landscape Ecology: From pattern and process to people and action

IALE-Europe and Ghent University are pleased to announce the Ph.D. Course...

IALE 2017 European Congress

Ghent, 12-15 September 2017

New IALE Bulletin out now!

Volume 35 no. 2, June 2017