The Urban Protected Areas (UPA) Network, created in 2009, is an
international, independent, decentralized and non-profit network, which brings
together protected area managers, local authorities, representatives of civil
society and teams of researchers, to collaborate on Urban-Nature issues, with
particular attention to the role of protected areas in urban dynamics.UPA Network was born with an
interdisciplinary applied research program initiated by Libertas Institute, an NGO associated to University of Paris Ouest-Nanterre,
with the support from the Interdisciplinary Program City and Environment
Research-PIRVE (CNRS-MEEDDAT), France. In collaboration with a wide range of
scientific and institutional partners, BiodiverCities Paris 2010was the inaugural international conference of the UPA Network,
followed by Biodivercities Rio 2012 and Biodivercities Cape Town 2014.
These last two events were organized in
the frame of the UNPEC project funded by the French National Agency for Research
(ANR) : Urban National Parks in Emerging Countries and Cities (2012-2015).
Centre, Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, Cape Town
Rescaling natural parks and the city
The Urban Protected Areas
Network will host its 3rd BiodiverCities International Conference in
Cape Town, 7-9 April 2014. This year’s conference will focus on issues of scale
in urban park management and policies. While the natural park itself can be
seen as an obvious level of management, with a clear ecological and
institutional level of organisation, its position within a metropolitan area
implies a more complex size and scope for park and city management.
proposes an opportunity for collective reflection on relationships between city
and nature, through the showcase and exchange of experience and strategies for
sustainable management of protected areas in changing urban contexts, from both
Northern and Southern perspectives. In an explicitly comparative undertaking,
this event brings together managers both of protected areas and of the cities
they intersect, contributing to a community of urban nature researchers and
practitioners. In this context, it is our pleasure to invite you to the
2014: The BiodiverCities Conference will take place in the SANBI Conference
Centre in the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, Cape Town.
2014: The conference will be followed by a one-day fieldtrip that will
symbolically and physically link the Table Mountain National Park and the
Nature Reserves of the City of Cape Town.
Urban National Parks in Emerging Countries and Cities (UNPEC)
UNPECis an interdisciplinary programof both basic and appliedresearch(2012-2015) working about Cape Town,Mumbai, Nairobi, Rioand their national parks.In this context,the
interdependence betweenhumans and
naturemay seem obvious.But in fact parks andcities managementareoften independentactivitieswhichare not withoutsome tensionsorconflicts, given the diversity ofactors andtheir
interests.UNPECaims to understand theimplications and consequencesof these dynamics.
For managers of national parks and local authorities: UNPECandUrbanProtected Areas Network(UPANetwork)providean independent
perspective onthe interaction
betweencities andprotected areas.The comparative dimensionof this workalso providesseveralopportunities to interactdirectly with yourcounterparts in otherurban protected areasand participate inour discussionon thecommonfeaturesofnature managementin- and for-theirurban contexts.
For researchers:UNPECandUrbanProtected Areas Network(UPANetwork)offer fertile groundfortheoretical and empirical workon the multiplerepresentations of naturein the cities, the socialand spatial segmentation, the cultural
dimensions of ecosystem
services, the topic of risk management, the circulationand application of the globalmodelsormulti-scaleinteractions.
UNPEC is funded by Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR), France.