The roles of universities and museums in relation to geoparks are discussed by comparing San'in Kaigan UNESCO Global Geopark in Japan and Lesvos UNESCO Global Geopark in Greece. Bottom-up management is a key to the success of sustainable development. It is important for local people to make decisions on regional matters. Scientists who live in the territory of a geopark are also local people and play multiple roles. They usually work for universities and museums. According to the guideline of UNESCO Geopark, education is an important issue. Geoparks need to connect people with earth science. Educational activities, however, need specific times and places to be carried out. It is essential to provide high-quality educational programs continuously for learners of all kinds in the territory of a geopark. In the case of San'in Kaigan Geopark, individual actors, including administrative officers, local geo tour guides, scientists, and curators provide geopark educational programs for learners without their own geopark educational strategy, because the education committee of San'in Kaigan Geopark discusses school education only and half of the geopark staff members are transferred every year. So, it is not easy for them to take over various tasks of the geopark. This situation in San'in Kaigan keeps learners away from high-quality and continuous education. Under this situation, scientists who work for universities play multiple roles in connecting local people with earth science and other people through multi-scale geopark networks which are of global, regional, national, and local scales, although scientists tend to be rooted and the locations of universities do not necessarily commit scientists to become engaged with the geopark. On the other hand, Lesvos Geopark is a good example. It has a rational educational strategy, develops scientific educational programs combined with geotourism, and provides opportunities for education and employment to local people at the Natural History Museum of Lesvos Petrified Forest. The same staff members at the museum take responsibility for management and education in the geopark. That is why they can develop Lesvos Geopark in a coherent manner.
2016 公益社団法人 東京地学協会