What we do

The GWS pursues its objectives by:

  • Publishing a journal, The George Wright Forum. The Forum is a place where authors are free to explore in detail issues of enduring interest to the parks community.
  • Holding the USA’s largest biennial interdisciplinary conference on research, resource management, and education in parks, protected areas, and cultural sites.
  • Promoting public policy that supports the scientific and heritage values of parks. For example, we have actively supported the the U.S. National Park Service's Natural Resource Challenge and scientific program, the World Heritage Convention, and UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere (biosphere reserve) Program, among many other programs.
  • Producing a variety of publications on park research and management issues.
  • Recognizing excellence through a series of awards presented at our conferences.
  • Promoting diversity and relevancy within the protected area professional community through such programs as the George Melendez Wright Student Travel Scholarship, the Native Participant Travel Grant Program, and Park Break.
  • Coordinating with like-minded organizations on matters of common interest.
  • Supporting international protected area and heritage preservation programs through our memberships in IUCN and ICOMOS.
  • Serving as a clearinghouse for inquiries from professionals and general public. (We welcome e-mail from members and non-members alike!)

The GWS’s work plan for 2008–2012 is outlined in a brief Strategic Statement.


We rely on people like you

The backbone of the GWS is its members, which currently number about 750 people and institutions. We invite you to join in! Anyone who supports our goals may become a member. Dues are modest, and by joining you’ll be part of a community of professionals and concerned citizens who care deeply about parks.



The Fine Print: Your Privacy, Your Comments

About your privacy. At various places on this site, we ask for personal information from you for membership, publication sales, or conference registration purposes. As a matter of policy, the George Wright Society does not make commercial use of the personal information you give us. On occasion we share (at no charge) our membership and conference mailing lists (e-mail and mailing addresses only--never phone/fax numbers) with other kindred nonprofit organizations for one-time mailings. We also use information you provide as the basis for referrals from our membership database, although you can withhold your name from such referrals if you wish. Otherwise, the information you provide is kept private.

Your comments and inquiries are always welcome, whether or not you are a GWS member. We do our best to answer promptly. Contact us at:

The George Wright Society
P.O. Box 65
Hancock, Michigan 49930-0065 USA
Telephone: 906-487-9722