Excel as a High-Performing Agency

RMRS scientists, R4 managers team up as science partners

COLORADO—Rocky Mountain Research Station scientists and staff and Intermountain National Forest System resource managers recently convened in Ogden, Utah, for the annual Science Partner Program workshop. The Science Partner Program enhances collaboration opportunities between station scientists and regional managers by deploying small scientist-manager working groups, which focus on developing outcomes for specific National Forest System challenges.

At the workshop, science partners presented results from the last two years of group collaboration to the Intermountain Regional Leadership Team through a combination of lightning round talks and posters. The group also met with members of the Region 4 Science Advisory Team, a recently launched interdisciplinary team of station scientists and regional counterparts tasked with integrating science and management at the programmatic level. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss how these two groups could complement and integrate these efforts. The potential collaboration between the two groups fits in well with the central theme of the Science Partner Workshop this year—problem-solving around how to move from individual, small group relationships to more durable, longer-term integration of science and management.

The Science Partner Program encourages relationship building through in-person interactions. The program is supported with travel funds, and partners are accountable to each other for specific project outcomes. In addition, an annual, competitive BeSMART microgrant program is available for proposals in which scientists and managers innovate together. The FY19 BeSMART program will focus on projects that support shared stewardship.

To learn more about the science partner program and watch a series of short videos in which science partners discuss their projects, check out the Science Partner Program page on the Rocky Mountain Research Station website.

Group photo.
Rocky Mountain Research Station scientists and Region 4 managers gathered in Ogden, Utah, for the annual Science Partner Program workshop. Forest Service photo by Kelly D. Wickens.