Filed under General Thoughts

Building Public Trust: AZA Workshop

Building Public Trust: AZA Workshop

On Monday, September 11, PGAV Destinations led a session highlighting market research that explored the question “how can we affect public perception of zoos and aquariums?” The session included brief presentations by 9 panelists, including Bob Cisneros from Big Bear Alpine Zoo, Mark Fisher from Cincinnati Zoo, John Walczak from Louisville Zoo, Bill Street from … Continue reading

Advanced Evolution of Chinese Zoos

Advanced Evolution of Chinese Zoos

I’m writing this piece in the fifth hour of the fourteen hour flight to the U.S. from Beijing. I’ve already watched two movies, had a couple glasses of wine, and did some work. I’m reflecting on my whirlwind trip in Ordos, Inner Mongolia for the Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens’ (CAZG) 2nd annual conference, where … Continue reading

Zoo Review: Wroclaw and Gdansk Zoos

Zoo Review: Wroclaw and Gdansk Zoos

Last month, I was able to spend a week in Europe focusing on zoo design. I attended a zoo design conference with many of the world’s leading designers and representatives from some of the most influential zoos from around the world. It was fascinating to see how differently everyone’s perspectives were, where their priorities lay, … Continue reading

Zoos in a Post-Truth World

Zoos in a Post-Truth World

We all know about ‘fake news’ and we should all be aware of the growing distrust of anything big: big media, big government, big business. How does this skepticism affect the authority of zoos and aquariums as knowledgeable and reliable sources of information? How do we counter the growing culture of concern about zoo and … Continue reading

Making Responsible Tacos: Conservation Brand Perception at Zoos & Aquariums

Making Responsible Tacos: Conservation Brand Perception at Zoos & Aquariums

Adapted from 2015 AZA National Conference presentation “Brand and Experience: Communicating Conservation to Millennials and Gen Z” Zoos and aquariums are evolving.  Conservation, once a secondary or tertiary goal of these institutions, has become a primary goal in recent decades—and ultimately, should become the singular, highest priority.  Most American zoos and aquariums have been developing, … Continue reading

WCS: A Brand Experience

WCS: A Brand Experience

About 20 years ago, the zoological society that oversaw the system of zoological facilities in and around the New York metropolitan area underwent a brand facelift.  They became the Wildlife Conservation Society—a deep integration of the five metro facilities with the conservation organization that had existed since the late 19th century.  And, as I’m sure … Continue reading

Five Stars: The Best of Yelp’s Zoo Reviews

Five Stars: The Best of Yelp’s Zoo Reviews

Reputation is everything. We’ve known this since middle school. That’s why it’s important to carefully monitor your public perception, especially if you are an institution supported primarily through admissions and tax support.  With the instant feedback available 24-7 on internet review websites, there is simply no excuse for any zoo or aquarium to not be … Continue reading