Members of the WWG mapping sub-group discuss the latest techniques for a wilderness register.
Members of the WWG mapping sub-group discuss the latest techniques for a wilderness register.

Wilderness Working Group

The Wilderness Working Group (WWG) brings together leading wild area practicioners from across Europe. The Group’s original remit is to develop policy and propose practical initiatives for protection and restoration.

It is chaired by Erika Stanciu (Wild Europe’s Chair), and its work includes assessing practical definitions, mapping, support for new initiatives such as the Wilderness Register, and fund raising proposals for a Pan-European communications strategy.

The WWG has been comprised of participants from 15 countries: Austria, Canada, Czech Republic, England, France, Finland, France, Hungary, Netherlands, Romania, Scotland, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine and the USA. Its membership includes NGO representatives, national park directors and scientists.

Technical sub-groups have been created, to help formulate a definition for wilderness and wild areas. And, most recently, to review and propose improved approaches for mapping and monitoring – in parallel with development of the Wilderness Register.

A policy discussion at IUCN office in Brussels

Other meetings

Wild Europe develops its policies from a wide range of inputs, with a series of ad hoc meetings which discuss particular topics.

In the photo to the left, a group of NGO representatives examines proposals. Participants included, from left to right: Michael Zika (WWF Austria), Feiko Prins (Natuurmonumenten, retd), Joep van de Vlasakker (Flaxfield Nature Consultancy, Belgium), Sandra Bakker (Statsbosbeheer, Netherlands), Bill Murphy (Coillte, Republic of Ireland), Denis Strong (National Parks and Wildlife Service, Republic of Ireland), Cipriano Marin (UNESCO), Ishwaran Natarajan (UNESCO), David Morris (Caucasus Nature Fund), Monika Jacobs (IUCN Regional Office for Europe), Zdenka Krenova (Biodiversity Research Centre, Czech Republic), Ben Delbaere (ECNC/LHN). Backs to camera: Zoltan Kun (European Wilderness Society), Peter Hobson (CEEM, UK), Federico Minozzi (Europarc Federation)