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Connecting federal employees, scientists, educators, and the public with their wilderness heritage
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The Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute

The Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute is dedicated to the development and dissemination of knowledge needed to improve management of wilderness, parks, and similarly protected areas. Located on the University of Montana campus in Missoula, the Leopold Institute was formally established in 1993 by the U.S. Forest Service and is administered by the Rocky Mountain Research Station. The Institute operates under an interagency agreement among the federal agencies that have wilderness management or research responsibility – the Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, and the U.S. Geological Survey.

Wilderness Research Priorities

A combination of multidisciplinary and interagency collaboration among scientists and managers allows the Leopold Institute to address issues pertinent to wilderness stewardship. Presently, specific research programs at the Institute follow the broad themes of:

Research Application

Making scientific information useful and accessible to managers and others interested in wilderness management is the goal of the Leopold Institute's Research Application Program (RAP).

The RAP features four resources for locating wilderness research information:

Hot Topics

In addition to our research priorities, the Leopold Institute is involved in the following specific topics that are timely and critical to sustaining wilderness. The Leopold Institute has:

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