Originally posted in February 2009 by Steph
Wed 11 February 2009 – 7.00pm
Lecture: The Tomsk Taiga Research Project, Siberian Forests: Economy Vs. Conservation
by Ms. Stephanie Ward
In association with GB Russia Society
This talk discussed the relationship between rural Siberian people and their surrounding forest in the context of the modern-day environmental movement in Russia. It was oriented around the field-based research findings of an exciting 3-year Darwin Initiative project to establish an area of Western Siberian taiga forest as Forest Stewardship Certified (FSC) – a status that could have important economic and social implications to this vital area of Russia. The project studied the biodiversity value of this part of the boreal region and the implications of FSC for local forestry in a time of great change in the Russian forest sector.
2007’s Tomsk Taiga expedition benefited from a donation from the Great Britain-Russia Society. This three-year collaborative project to support biodiversity was funded mainly by the Darwin Initiative and was managed by WTA Education Services in the UK, on behalf of the Tree Council.
Stephanie Ward recently graduated with a first class Masters degree in Russian Studies from the School of Slavonic & East European Studies, University College, London. Her work as co-founder of the charity Look East Wild Earth www.lookeast.org.uk involves supporting Russian and East European environmental groups and educating the UK public about the importance of Siberia and its role in climate change. Projects she is currently involved in include the development of forest-education resources using Siberian myth and legend as well as encouraging volunteering in Russia, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus. She is also working for the sustainable development charity, BioRegional Development Group as biodiversity champion and within the ‘fibres’ programme promoting a sustainable paper loop for London.