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Symposium: Toward A More Diverse Adirondacks

Symposium: Toward A More Diverse Adirondacks
Increasing Human Diversity throughout the Hudson River Watershed

Saturday 16 August 2014
SUNY-ESF Newcomb Campus, Newcomb, NY

In comparison to a rapidly changing New York State the Adirondack region suffers a lack of diversity in both its permanent population and its visitor population. This growing diversity gap represents a bi-directional problem. On the one hand it threatens the well-being of the Adirondack park because a predominantly urban and non-white population may not see the park as relevant and therefore may fail to adequately protect it. On the other hand it affects the well-being of those very populations because they have little opportunity to experience the myriad benefits the park offers.

The story of this diversity gap is difficult and complex, embodying a long American history of racism, homophobia, economic and social privilege, conflicting cultural values and injustice. To address it in any meaningful way will require a region-wide commitment, beginning with recognition of the problem and a discussion to realize a deeper understanding. From there a strategy to address the gap will require multiple dimensions, ethics, economics, perception, media and social justice among them.

The purpose of this symposium is to explore diversity and the Adirondacks through the multiple perspectives of history, the present and the future in order to recognize and better understand it, to discuss strategies for reducing the diversity gap and finally to forge a regional commitment to actively address diversity issues moving forward for the mutual benefit of the Adirondack Park and the people of New York State.

Peter Nelson, Adirondack Almanack, Symposium Co-Chair

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SUNY-ESF
State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry
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