Conservation Research

Photo Credit: Jerry Monkman

Conservation Research

Conservation Institute Study Covers

Integrating lessons from OSI’s acquisition work over the past 40 years and our more recent conservation capital activities, OSI provides practical solutions to the land use challenges facing conservation organizations and foundations in the 21st Century. 

Guided by staff with expertise in finance, planning and forestry, we work in partnership with leaders across the country to conduct and disseminate thoughtful analysis that can guide smart conservation.

OSI’s studies and publications aim to influence land use policy and practice through a unique blend of research, communication and training focused on promising approaches to landscape-scale conservation. Through our work, we seek to:

  • Find the appropriate balance between thoughtful regulation and permanent protection;
  • Foster more sustainable management of working forests and farms;
  • Increase investment in conservation.


We Can Help You

  • Inform public policy. For example, to guide land use policy of a 400,000-acre resort plan in Maine, the Conservation Research Program conducted financial analyses that reconfigured the balance of conservation and development.
  • Identify land conservation priorities. For example, to guide foundation giving, OSI completed an assessment of Western Massachusetts’ conservation opportunities
  • Analyze land use trends. For Example, to help communities direct development to existing urban centers, OSI completed a Sprawl & Open Space Action Strategy for the Capital District of New York State. 
  • Host conferences. For example, to strengthen the common ground between hunters, anglers and conservationists, the Conservation Research Program sponsored a conference for New England scientists and journalists.

Who We Are

Conservation Research managed by OSI staff based in New York that collaborates with outside experts on specific projects. 

OSI Executive Vice President Peter Howell, a Wharton MBA and former director of environment grantmaking programs at the Doris Duke Charitable and Wallace Foundations, serves as its director.

Abigail Weinberg, a graduate of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, as its manager.

An advisory committee, which includes several OSI trustees, provides oversight for the program.

To learn more about OSI's Conservation Research, please contact Abigail Weinberg at 212.290.8200, extension 235 (

Partners & Audiences

To achieve its mission, the Conservation Research Program reaches across traditional land trust boundaries to partner with leaders in diverse fields including:  policy-makers, public and private funders, landowners, appraisers, economists, foresters, land use planners and land management organizations.


What You Can Do

Donate to support OSI’s work

Become a part of our mission to safeguard at-risk places through your tax-deductible gift.


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