The Chair is based at the Centre for Mountain Studies at Perth College, one of the 13 Academic Partners of the University of the Highlands and Islands and is led by Professor Martin Price. The team work to assess and continue the sustainable development of mountains by getting involved in a variety of projects and inspiring future researchers through academic programmes.
They’ve organized two major conferences in Perth, providing unparalleled opportunities for scientists from a broad range of disciplines to discuss their research and plan future activities. ‘Global Change and the World’s Mountains’ was organised jointly with the Mountain Research Initiative (MRI), and ‘Mountains of our Future Earth’ was organised in collaboration with the MRI and the Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment. After collaboration with the MRI to develop both its global research strategy and a strategic agenda for research in Europe’s mountains, the Chair played a key role in the establishment of the Network for European Mountain Research (NEMOR).
As well as facilitating international collaboration, the Chair delivers an online MSc in Sustainable Mountain Development, managed from the Centre for Mountain Studies at the University of the Highlands and Islands. The part-time course has been available to students around the world since 2004 and is paving the way for similar programmes in Japan and the Himalayas.
ABOUT THE CHAIR’S RESEARCH
Martin has conducted research across the globe as he studies the interactions between humans and environmental processed throughout mountainous regions. Through his synthesis of studies from many social and natural science disciplines, Martin has contributed to policies for sustainable mountain development.
Supported by his role as Chair of Sustainable Mountain Development, Martin has informed international partnerships on how to transform theory into practice on topics including the characterisation of Europe’s mountain areas, the application of the outcomes of projects in mountain areas and social innovation.
From 2017 to 2020, the Chair led a three-year project funded by the European Commission’s Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme: ‘Sustainable Heritage Areas: Partnerships for Ecotourism’ (SHAPE). This enabled authorities, businesses and communities to develop innovative ecotourism initiatives which preserve local assets and create economic value from them. The project partners were biosphere reserves and regional parks and universities from Canada, Finland, Norway, Iceland and Scotland.