Culture, kastom and conservation in Melanesia: what happens when worldviews collide?
Stacy Jupiter is the Melanesia Program director for the Wildlife Conservation Society, based out of Suva, Fiji, where she previously directed WCS’s Fiji Country Program. Originally from the U.S., Stacy completed her undergraduate studies at Harvard University and doctoral research at the University of California, Santa Cruz and at the University of Queensland, while on a Fulbright scholarship. She first became interested in community-based management and conservation while serving as a Peace Corps rural fisheries volunteer in the tropical rainforests of Gabon, Central Africa. Her research has focused on impacts of human activities on linked tropical coastal ecosystems and ecosystem services in Australia, Hawaii, and Fiji, and the effectiveness of local management actions in achieving conservation, livelihood and well-being outcomes. She has authored several guides on good practices for holistic management in Pacific islands contexts. In working with local communities and governments, Stacy deeply recognizes the importance of incorporating local knowledge and traditional practice and beliefs into management planning. Stacy is an SCB Oceania Board member and was awarded SCB’s Early Career Conservationist award in 2015.