Our Mission

To provide observations and information on the emerging fields of landscape scale conservation, heritage preservation, and sustainable community development.

About Us
the observer


Stay up-to-date with the latest nature, culture and community news.


We won’t spam you or share your information. Newsletters are sent approximately 10 times a year. Unsubscribe at any time.

Popular Posts
Get Involved

Archived Newsletters

Published since 2012, the Living Landscape Observer e-newsletter highlights approaches to large landscape conservation from around the world, with an emphasis on policy and ideas for growth and change.


  • December 2023 / January 2024 – The Nature Culture Journey Down Under, Highlights of the 2023 ICOMOS General Assembly, Explore Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and Reimagining Philanthropy
  • September 2023 – Special Issue – Rural and Working Landscapes: Two Recent Webinars Explore Significance of Rural and Working Landscapes to Resilience, Sustainability, and Ecological Diversity
  • March/April 2023 – On the Trail of the Nature Culture Journey, Cultural Heritage in Rural Landscapes, and The Monument Relocation, Removal, and Reinterpretation Toolkit
  • February 2023 –  The Importance of International Connections, UN Biodiversity Conference, and Correction: Recognition of African American Cemeteries in Virginia
  • January 2023 – Special Issue – End of Year Legislative Updates


  • November/December 2022 – Looking Down the Road: Trends in Landscape Conservation and Australia faces “A Fierce Urgency of Now”
  • September/October 2022 – The Challenge of Designating African American Heritage Sites and The Importance of Conserving African American Cemeteries
  • June/July 2022 –  National Heritage Area Program Legislation: Has the Time Come at Last? and Launching the Maritime Washington National Heritage Area
  • April/May 2022 – The Challenge of Expanding the National Park Idea and Three Landscapes: Civil War, Abolition, and the National Park Idea 
  • February/March 2022 – The Role of the Convener in Landscape Scale Conservation and Charting an Uncertain Future for National Heritage Areas
  • January 2022 – Looking Forward and Looking Back: A Countdown of 2021’s Top Posts.



  • December 2020 – Year in Review, Preview of the Biden Administration
  • October/November 2020 – Interview with Ta Enos of the PA Wilds, Landscape Scale Community and Economic Development
  • August/September 2020 – Role of Storytelling In Landscape Conservation, Exploring the Landscapes of the Caribbean, and NatureCultures Dialogue: Rural Landscapes and Integrated Management
  • July 2020 –  Challenges Facing Public Lands in the United States, NatureCultures Dialogue: Connecting Practice, and Wild Horses on Public Lands
  • June 2020 –  Climate Change and Cultural Landscapes, Interview with Dr. Marcy Rockman, NatureCultures Dialogue: The Theory of NatureCultures Integration, World Rural Landscapes Principles: Communicating and transmitting the heritage and values of rural landscapes 
  • April/ May 2020 –  How the Pandemic Changes the Landscape, The Impact of the Current Crisis on the Landscape of Agriculture, and World Rural Landscapes Principles: Sustainably Manage Rural Landscapes and Their Heritage Values
  • March 2020 –  The Urgent Need for Landscape Scale Work, Changes Coming for NEPA, and the Sixth Nature Culture Dialogue
  • February 2020 –  How to Conserve a Landscape?, Pennsylvania’s Conservation Landscapes: A Success Story, Washington Watch Update, and Fifth Nature Culture Dialogue
  • January 2020 –  Conservation’s Competing Visions, Conservation and Controversy in Martin County, California, and Flagging Sites of Universal Value


  • December 2019 –  Third Nature-Culture Dialogue, Climate Change Threatens Heritage Landscapes, Best of 2019, and World Rural Landscape Principles: Protect Heritage Landscapes and their Heritage Values
  • October 2019 – Second Nature-Culture Dialogue, Maritime Washington NHA, Mesa Verde National Park: Reinterpreting the Landscape. and World Rural Landscape Principles: Understanding Rural Landscapes and their Heritage Values
  • September 2019 – First Nature-Culture Dialogue, Landscape Management: More than just Words, and World Rural Landscape Principles: Threats, Challenges, Benefits, and Sustainability
  • July 2019 – BLM Large Landscape Work Faces Uncertainty, and World Rural Landscape Principle: Definitions and Values of Rural Landscapes
  • June 2019 – The GreenRiver Drift: Transhumance the American West and Introduction to the World Rural Landscape Principles
  • May 2019 – Labor Movement History and Perpetual Easements as a Historic Act
  • April 2019 – African American Burial Grounds Network and Lessons from Memorial Park
  • March 2019 – Proposed National Register Rule Threatens Historic and Cultural Landscapes and Senate Hearing on Interior Nominee
  • January 2019 – Forward Together : The Culture/Nature Journey the Presidio San Francisco and Best Laid Plans: How to Ensure Programs Survive


  • November/December 2018 – Forward Together : The Culture/Nature Journey the Presidio San Francisco, 2018: Year in Review, and ICYMI: Requiem for a National Park System Advisory Board
  • October 2018 – Protecting America’s Long Trails and a New Book on Historic Land Conservation
  • September 2018 – The Challenge of Conserving Cultural Resources at a Landscape Scale and Histories of Contamination and Recovery
  • Summer 2018 – Network for Landscape Conservation issues New Report, and Gullah Geechee: Reflections on the Warp and Woof of Cultural Traditions and Landscape
  • May 2018 – The Shrinking of Bears Ears National Monument, Northern Rangelands Trust, and US/ ICOMOS Symposium and Update
  • April 2018 – Network for Landscape Conservation and Requiem for an Advisory Board
  • March 2018 – Vietnam: The American Season, Lessons on Interpreting and Representing Slavery, and Cultural Parks: What happened?
  • January/February 2018 – Community Development, Behind the Scenes of the Legislative Process, and NPS’ International History


  • September 2017 – Bureau of Land Management Leasing Plans, Edward Abbey, and Point Reyes National Seashore
  • August 2017  – Recreation in the Mesabi Iron Range and the Nature / Culture Journey
  • June / July 2017 – English Lake District World Heritage and Energy Bill in U.S. Senate
  • May 2017 – National Monuments, Virtue of Good Government, and Detroit’s Cultural Landscape
  • April 2017 – Featured voice interview with Emily Bateson, World Heritage, Trends in Large Landscape work
  • March 2017 – Heritage Tourism and the U.S. Federal budget
  • February 2017 – Featured voice with historian Jacqueline M.M. Gonzales on National Seashores, National Parks on the U.S.-Mexico border
  • January 2017 – Featured voice with historian Allen Dieterich-Ward, Congressman Ryan Zinke hearings, 1981 and 2017 comparison


  • November/December 2016 – Preview of Trump administration and year-in-review
  • October 2016 – Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and Lamar Buffalo Ranch
  • September 2016 – Nature and culture at World Conservation Congress
  • August 2016 – US presidential election and landscape conservation, 30 years of National Heritage Areas
  • July 2016 – Appalachian Trail partnerships and corporate role in National Parks
  • June 2016 – Highway Planning and Landscape Conservation
  • May 2016 – International Land Conservation Network
  • April 2016 – Creation of the Rice Coast and Looking to the 1970s for Ideas on Conservation
  • March 2016 – World Heritage List and Urban National Parks
  • February 2016 – San Antonio Missions World Heritage Site
  • January 2016 – National Academy Releases Report on Large Landscapes


  • November 2015 – ICOMOS updates and Education in National Heritage Areas
  • October 2015 – Mitigation on a Landscape Scale
  • September 2015 – New “Branding” Opportunities for NPS and Keweenaw National Historical Park
  • August 2015 – New Literature on Open Spaces and the Past, Present and Future of the LWCF
  • July 2015 – New Monuments and Old Debates and the National Historic Preservation Act at 50
  • June 2015 – The Difficulty of Funding Landscape Scale Work
  • May 2015 – New York State Parks and Heritage Areas
  • April 2015 – Urban Parks – Past, Present and Future and New Approaches for Heritage Area Funding
  • March 2015 – World Heritage Threatened and the Next Generation of Preservationists
  • February 2015 – Next steps for large landscape conservation and Labor History in the NPS
  • January 2015 – Coal Seam Gas and Public Lands in Australia


  • December 2014 – Heritage Areas get Reauthorized and What’s Next for Blackstone National Heritage Corridor and now National Park?
  • November 2014 – Nature and Culture: Still Worlds Apart? and the 1970’s Recreation Imperative
  • October 2014 – Reflections on the recent National Workshop on Large Landscape Conservation and a piece highlighting landscapes associated with the classic children’s novel Anne of Green Gables.
  • September 2014 – Updates on the legislation that might change the successful Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor model
  • August 2014 – News on the Pennsylvania Wilds and New York State Heritage Areas
  • July 2014 – Traditional Cultural Landscapes and National Heritage Areas Program Legislation
  • June 2014 – Labor History in New York State and World Heritage Meeting in Qatar
  • May 2014 – National Historic Landmarks and Heritage Areas and Canals
  • April 2014 – Landscapes of the Great Society and NHA@30 coverage
  • March 2014 – Atlantic Coast Flyway, NHA@30 and historic documents on large landscape conservation
  • February 2014 – Uncertain future for New York State heritage areas, thoughts on the Presidio and and NHA funding woes
  • January 2014 – National Heritage Areas at 30 overview, Land and Water Conservation fund updates


  • December 2013 – Pennsylvania Supreme Court Makes Conservation History
  • November 2013 – Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) issues a report on National Parks and a landscape report from Australia
  • October 2013 – Conservation connections between Italy and the U.S. and impacts of the federal shutdown
  • September 2013 – Industrial heritage and conserving Agricultural landscapes
  • August 2013 – African American Civil War cemeteries in Pennsylvania and the Adirondack Park
  • July 2013 – Key resources on the evaluation of large landscape conservation efforts, remembering J.B. Jackson, and the changing nature of post-industrial landscapes.
  • June 2013 – Can parks and other protected areas be self-sustaining or should they even aim to be? More news on world heritage and on tidelands law and policy.
  • May 2013 – Risks to the World Heritage Program and thoughts on cultural and natural resource conservation on a Georgia Sea Island. Also, a re-cap of the LLO’s first year.
  • April 2013 –Thoughts on preservation vs. conservation, the Fabos conference and a new Aldo Leopold film
  • March 2013 – Learn more about new national monuments and the first NPS unit in Delaware
  • February 2013 – National Heritage Areas evaluation update and news on the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor
  • January 2013 – Revisiting the Leopold report and Secretary Salazar’s legacy on large landscapes


  • December 2012 – Highlights of 2012 and a look at the year ahead.
  • November 2012 – Featuring information on the history conservation and preservation along the Erie Canal and a report back on two large landscape sessions at the recent National Trust for Historic Preservation conference.
  • October 2012 – Featuring information on natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania, large landscape conservation in the Amazon and a reflection on the legacy of Lady Bird Johnson.
  • September 2012 – Featuring information on the Gullah Geechee Corridor and funding cuts for the National Heritage Areas program.
  • August 2012 – Featuring information on threats to the Appalachian Trail and signage in large landscapes.
  • July 2012 – Featuring information on the Washington Boro archaeological sites, significant locations associated with the history and culture of indigenous peoples along the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania as well as news on upcoming meetings focused on large landscape conservation.
  • June 2012 – Featuring information on upcoming conferences, large landscape conservation in the Amazon and updates on World Heritage.
  • May 2012 – Featuring information on National Heritage Areas, proposed national park in the Blackstone Valley and more
  • April 2012 – Featuring updates on federal funding, America’s Summit on National Parks and more