Filed under Profession

4 Key Take-Aways from the Recent Zoo Design Conference

4 Key Take-Aways from the Recent Zoo Design Conference

I was lucky to attend (and present at) The International Zoo Design Conference held in Poland in 2017. Many speakers from around the world talked about their experiences designing habitats or theorizing on the future of zoos and aquariums. While the majority of attendees were from Europe, folks from South America, Africa, and many countries … Continue reading

Happy Anniversary! 10 Years of DesigningZoos.com

Happy Anniversary! 10 Years of DesigningZoos.com

Can you believe this summer marks ten years of my little corner of the internet talking about design and the future of zoos and aquariums? Although my posting has become more infrequent as my professional life has evolved, you–my supportive and sometimes thoughtfully critical reader–remain constant. I owe you a huge Thank You for reading my … Continue reading

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

Ecotourism vs Zoos

My newest blog post at Blooloop.com has just posted! This post, again inspired by my recent travels to India, explores the validity of “just go see animals in the wild” as an argument against zoos. It has sparked some interesting conversation on LinkedIn, so go check it out, here.

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

How to Become a Zoo Designer

How to Become a Zoo Designer

Each week, I receive at least one email from an enthusiastic young soul asking for advice on how to become a zoo designer.  Many requests are from college students, already several years into design school.  Others are from enterprising high schoolers (and a junior high schooler or two) planning their futures.  I’ve even corresponded with … Continue reading