The arguments have long continued about competing uses for land in the Highlands and Islands: conservation or development? Two Scottish biologists take a very different approach: compartmentalisation and institutional thinking, they say, is blocking fresh solutions.
Derek Pretswell and Ron Greer have built on the ideas of earlier Scottish ecologists and drawn on theory and practice from the Nordic countries today. Their approach is sometimes called Restoration Ecology, because they look at the whole ecosystem of land and wildlife and people, and work to regenerate it and all the various elements within it.
Derek Pretswell explains how their ideas challenge land use practices and institutional thinking. Let’s centre our thinking instead on quality of life for both people and wildlife, he says, and recognise that environmental diversity should lead to economic diversity, and we can then develop strategies for a Highland landscape that fulfils its biological potential, for wildlife and people alike.