PUP Program | The PUP Global Heritage Consortium

Public Use Planning

Public Use Planning first emerged as a program RARE Center for Tropical Conservation in 1998, then became a project of UNESCO’s World Heritage Center in 2006, then a focus area under the PUP Global Heritage Consortium (see a brief history). It remains, however, the centerpiece around which all other programs are being built (see brochure on Overview of PUP Process). The initial concept of a facilitated set of modules that lead to a public use plan, nevertheless, has greatly expanded and become more holistic. The document that we share with participating sites is the PUP Manual: Planning Sites for Life. See our team below.



The Team

Our expert team is bilingual in Spanish and English, all experienced in international development as well as interpretation, and work from a variety of countries.


Board Director


Steve McCool – Professor Emeritus of Wildlands Planning and Management, University of Montana

American, is professor emeritus at the University of Montana. His work over the last 40 years has emphasized interaction of people and natural resources, particularly with respect to managing visitors in national parks and wilderness, developing new ways of thinking about natural resource planning, and strengthening approaches to public engagement in planning processes. Steve graduated from the University of Idaho with a Bachelor’s degree in Forest Resource Management and continued on with his studies at the University of Minnesota receiving a Ph.D. in 1970. Since 1977, Steve has been on the faculty of the College of Forestry and Conservation at the University of Montana, following appointments at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and Utah State University. Steve has also served in several research and development positions with the U.S. Forest Service as well some short appointments in National Forest Systems. He currently is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Society and Conservation at UM. He serves with the World Commission on Protected Area’s Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group, and reviews for journals such as Environmental Management, Society and Natural Resources, and Journal of Sustainable Tourism. Steve holds an extensive publication record with numerous refereed journal articles, several edited books, as well as the co-authored and popular UN World Tourism Organization & World Conservation Union (IUCN) Best Practices Guidelines Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas: Guidelines for Planning and Management. Currently he works in a variety of capacities, emphasizing conservation and academic development projects with several universities in the southern Africa sphere.


Art Pedersen – Founding Director, Sustainable Tourism Program, UNESCO

Was founding director of UNESCO World Heritage Center’s Sustainable Tourism Program. Art’s specific professional experience includes work with regional tourism strategies, national park management plans, tourism assessment and feasibility studies, creation of regional tourism organizations, and the development of practical tourism marketing-promotional approaches. He has worked on issues of visitor limits in fragile areas and in linking tourism benefits to local communities with the goal to aid protection and conservation efforts. This work on tourism, protected areas, and economic development issues, has been in Latin America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. Most of these experiences, in some form or another, have involved questions related to the push and pull of economic development and environmental and cultural concerns. Today he is an international consultant based in Finland.



Jon Kohl – Coordinator, PUP Global Heritage Consortium

Jon founded the PUP Global Heritage Consortium in 2013 after having developed the PUP Process and PUP Manual starting in Honduras in 1998 under RARE Center for Tropical Conservation. He has a keen interest in identifying new theories and approaches and turning them into practice. Based in Costa Rica, Jon has worked with PUP around the world, always focusing on the visitor management side, especially his passion for heritage interpretation, but with an eye to learning beyond just visitor management to all kinds of planning. Ultimately he sees a spiritual connection to the value of heritage and management that he shares in his blog on heritage interpretation, his writing, and his work. For more information about him, please visit his website.

Pham Anh – Technical Service Member, Viet Nam

Anh led the public use planning efforts in 2010-11 in Central Viet Nam working with two World Heritage Sites and one biosphere reserve (see article to the right). She is now finishing up her PhD in community-based tourism at Queensland University in Australia.


Stanley Arguedas – Technical Service Member, Costa Rica

Stanley is an expert in management planning in natural protected areas having worked all over South America and Costa Rica as technical director of the Latin American School for Protected Areas.

Country Representatives

The real work is carried out by our corps of PUP country representatives located around the world. See their biographies.


Article (2010) that appeared in UNESCO’s World Heritage magazine about PUP in Vietnam. (Click to see)

brochure catalog


Back to Top