WILD Cities Program

WILD Cities


Program Coordinators – Vance Martin, Austin Perez (Austin.Perez@wild.org), and Ulrich Stoecker (stoecker@duh.de) 

WILD10 Program Goal – WILD Cities™ will create a global network of cities, involving diverse professions and intercultural and intergenerational perspectives, which are committed to the principles of Nature Needs Half™.  This working body, facilitated by WILD, will formulate common criteria defining a WILD Cities™ and international guidelines for city planning.  It will be capable of generating and sharing replicable models and methodologies, policies, and investments that ensure a place for wild nature while meeting the needs of urban dwellers.  It will demonstrate citizen involvement and buy-in to render WILD City™ measures plausible in policymaking and budget allocations. WILD Cities™ aims to achieve: (1) continued and expanded ecosystem services to urban areas; (2) quantity and quality wildlife habitat and biodiversity within cities and the watershed; (3) enticing opportunities for recreation, and health and economic benefits from open and green spaces in the city confines and beyond; (4) educational opportunities; and (5) revenue generation (jobs, property values, tourism income) and public cost savings (avoiding environmental remediation and storm recovery) for cities.


Session Time Key

A is      9:30 AM to 11:10 AM
B is     11:30 AM to 1:10 PM
C is      3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
D is      5:00 PM to 6:30 PM


WILD Cities (WC) Workshop & Roundtable Series

WC-I: Wildness as a Part of a Modern City
Scheduled for: Tuesday, Session A– Aula 2.2 Salon de Pinturas

WC-II: The Watershed as a Planning Unit for WILD Cities
Scheduled for: Wednesday, Session A– Aula 2.5Salon de Pinturas

WC-III: Designing Natural Areas for Ecosystem Services Delivery
Scheduled for: Wednesday, SessionB– Aula 2.3 Salon de Pinturas

WC-IV: Activating Diversifying Constituencies
Scheduled for: Wednesday, Session D– Aula 2.4 Salon de Pinturas

WC-V: Creating Enthusiasm for Urban Wild Nature
Scheduled for: Thursday, Session A– Aula 1.2 Salon de Pinturas

WC-VI: Inspiring a Social Movement for Wild Nature
[crossover with Citizen Activism Workshop] Scheduled for: Tuesday, Session B– Aula 2.4 Salon de Pinturas

WW-VII: WILD Cities Roundtable – WILD Cities Champions
Scheduled for: Thursday, Session D– Aula 1.2 Salon de Pinturas




Scheduled for: Tuesday, Session A – Aula 2.2

Objective: Rethink the relationship between cities and nature as a pivotal challenge for nature conservation and also for the future of wilderness in the “Urban Millennium”. Wild nature is a vital component of the urban natural infrastructure – and it already exists, but is often unnoticed or not well appreciated.

Moderator—Ulrich Stoecker, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) (Germany)

Urban Wild Areas: Approaches & examples from the International Wild Cities Workshop Series in Germany
Silke Wissel, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) (Germany)

Wildness as A Component of the Urban Green Infrastructure: The Four Kinds of Urban Nature
Prof. Dr. Ingo Kowarik, Technical University of Berlin (Germany)

Create a New Relationship between Cities and Nature: A Discussion with WILD10 Participants
Ulrich Stoecker, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) (Germany)


CAW-I/WC-VI:  Inspiring a Social Movement for Wild Nature

Scheduled for: Tuesday, Session B – Aula 2.5 

Objective – Explore methods and strategies for expanding and diversifying the global social movement for wild nature, with a particular emphasis on urban populations.

Moderator – Jo Roberts, Wilderness Foundation United Kingdom

Broadcasting the Success of Using Wilderness to Forge Cultural Understanding & Peace – Connecting Cultures
Mark Evans, Connecting Cultures (United Kingdom)

Water, Rivers & People – Creating a New Culture of Water
Pedro Arrojo, University of Zaragosa (Spain)

Online Communications to Stimulate Wildlife Ecotourism – Big Mammals in the Iberian Peninsula
Jose Ignacio Vega, Nebrija University in Madrid (Spain)

Nature Missionary Work – America’s Great Outdoors 21st Century Job Corps & Civilian Conservation Center
Joel Holtrop, The WILD Foundation and US Forest Service (retired) (USA)

Using Tourism to Inspire Conservation Activism – Asilia Africa in Mozambique & East Africa
Mera McGrew, Asilia Africa (South Africa) [TBC]


WC-II:  The Watershed as a Planning Unit for WILD Cities

Scheduled for: Wednesday, Session A – Aula 2.5

Objective: Identify and catalog the methodologies of projects restoring riparian, wetland and coastal ecosystems (e.g. stabilizing stream banks, mitigating storm water pollution, and restoring degraded shorelines) that are replicable by WILD Cities. Use case studies where protection of freshwater sources upstream from a city is compensated directly by urban dwellers to identify model practices replicable by WILD Cities.

Moderators – Cathy Geraghty Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois (United States) and Austin Perez, The WILD Foundation

Introduction of the WILD Cities Project
Vance Martin and Austin Perez, The WILD Foundation

Public-Private Partnerships to Protect Urban Watersheds – Chicago Wilderness
Cathy Geraghty, Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois (United States)

Urban Waters Federal Partnership: Restoring Urban Waters and Revitalizing Communities
Leanne Marten, U.S. Forest Service (United States)

Urban Protected Areas to Protect the Urban Watershed
Paolo Giuntarelli, IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas, Urban Specialists Group (Italy)

Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Mumbai – A Case Study for Protecting an Urban Wilderness
Shardul S. Bajikar, Saevus Wildlife, LLP (India)

Protecting Wildlife in a Watershed – Urban Wildlife Refuges
John Schmerfeld, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (United States)

WC-III:  Designing Natural Areas for Ecosystem Delivery

Scheduled for: Wednesday, Session B – Aula 2.3 

Objective: Learn and strategize on the full spectrum of ecosystem services that are provided by nature in an urban context.  Consider methods of designing natural areas for ecosystem services delivery.  Identify where to access resources on the specific methodologies of enabling nature to deliver these ecosystem services. Strategize on how to make the urban public aware of and value the ecosystem services provided by local nature.

Moderator – Emily Young, San Diego Foundation

Regional Resilience and Preparedness: Case of the San Diego Region
Emily Young, San Diego Foundation (United States)

Resilience Capacities of U.S. Urban Parks
Dr. Gary Machlis, National Park Service (United States) 

Managing Urban Wildlife Habitat & Expanding Green Infrastructure – New York City
Sarah Charlop-Powers, New York City Natural Areas Conservancy (United States)

Restoring the Wetlands Freshwater Reservoir – Xochimilco, Mexico City
Claudio Contreras Koob, International League of Conservation Photographers (Mexico)

Nature and Biodiversity in the City
Peter Brastow, San Francisco Department of the Environment (United States)


WC-IV:  Activating Diverse Constituencies

Scheduled for: Wednesday, Session D – Aula 2.4

Objective: Methodologies for involving and showcasing ethnic and minority group commitments to wild nature.  Foster community projects designed and carried out at the initiative of young people and using social media, showcase student-led conservation success stories sparking new ideas for action.

Moderator—Jo Roberts, Wilderness Foundation UK

Connecting Urban Canadians to Nature and History – Rouge National Urban Park
Kevin McNamee, Parks Canada (Canada) 

Wilderness Foundation Pride Projects in South Africa
[Social Benefits Forum] Sharon McCallum, Lihle Mbokazi, and Lincoln Meyer, Wilderness Foundation South Africa (South Africa) 

Engaging the Unemployed –  TurnAround Program:  “Rewilding Urban Youth”
[Social Benefits Forum] Jo Roberts, Wilderness Foundation UK (United Kingdom)

Green Education – Developing Innate Biophilia for a Wilder Education of Children in Cities
Heike Freire, Author of “Green Education: Ideas to Bring Children Close to Nature” (Spain)



Scheduled for: Thursday, Session A – Aula 1.2

Objective – Different approaches in environmental communication to bring city people actively in touch with wild nature and natural processes. Create higher appreciation of biodiversity conservation through emotional experiences of wild nature in urban areas.

Moderator—Ulrich Stoecker, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH)

Ways and Means to Create Acceptance of Urban Wildness: Results of the International Wild Cities Workshop Series in Germany
Silke Wissel, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) (Germany)

Communicating the Unknown to City People: Campaigns for Biodiversity and Urban Wild Nature
Stefanie Jung, BioFrankfurt (Germany)

Re-Connect City People with Wild Nature – A Discussion with WILD10 Participants
Ulrich Stoecker, Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) (Germany)


WC-VII:  WILD Cities Roundtable – WILD Cities Champions

Scheduled for: Thursday, Session D – Aula 1.2

Objective: Analyze characteristics of cities claimed or known to be “sustainable,” and catalog wild nature values by city to develop a matrix tool to foster outreach.  Identify initial champions from the cities with an apparent commitment to the initial principles of WILD Cities.  Explore and select tools to stimulate and assure stakeholder buy-in, including social media and cultural expressions of WILD Cities values in recreation, exploration, art, dance, music, photography and film, and architecture.  Identify “WILD City Champions” candidates.

Moderators – Vance Martin & Austin Perez, The WILD Foundation and Ulrich Stoecker, DUH