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As global environmental change proceeds at an unprecedented pace, the practice of conservation is adapting to a complex set of new challenges. The conservation community has increasingly recognized that responding effectively to these challenges will require that the next generation of practitioners and scholars not only develop expertise in specific fields but also have the conceptual tools to work across disciplines. The University of Georgia’s Integrative Conservation (ICON) Ph.D. Program is designed meet that need by ensuring that students gain disciplinary depth in one of five fields – Anthropology, Geography, Ecology, Forestry, or Marine Sciences – while also collaborating across disciplines and fields of practice to seek integrative solutions to complex conservation challenges.

Each disciplinary focus ensures that ICON students receive rigorous theoretical and methodological training in a traditional discipline, while also working integratively at the intersections of other disciplines. In addition, ICON students work directly with conservation practitioners as partners and colleagues through internships and collaborative research projects. These experiences, along with training modules led by communications experts, ensure that students learn to communicate effectively and strategically with a wide range of audiences.


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