Bocas del Toro, Panama
(Spring Semester)

Conservation, Tourism, and Development: Fieldwork in Coastal Management

Students in this course will travel during Spring Break to Bocas del Toro on the Caribbean Coast of Panama.  The Bocas del Toro Archipelago of over 20 nearshore islands boasts an amazing diversity of cultures (Ngöbe Indian, Afro-Caribbean, Panamanian Mestizo, European and North American expatriates), as well as high quality coastal environments (coral reefs, seagrass beds, mangrove forests, tropical rainforests, and beaches).  The region is currently experiencing rapid tourist growth, as well as residential development projects for foreigners.  The cultural and biological diversities of the region, as well as the development pressures they face, provide an excellent opportunity to study the socio-economic and environmental impacts of tourist development; regional attempts to create land use plans; conflicts among different uses and users of the coastal and island resources; and various cultural perspectives on the current evolving situation.  The course will allow participants to develop projects tailored to their interests and skills. 

Please contact Daniel Suman, dsuman@rsmas.miami.edu if you are interested.