Discovering the IUCN in Canada: Lana Ciarniello

a woman standing next to a stream with a bear in the background

There are over 500 people in Canada who are actively involved with the work of the IUCN and/or the CCIUCN. Many are members in one or more IUCN Commissions. Others belong to IUCN or CCIUCN member organizations. This occasional series will highlight their IUCN-related work in Canada.

Introducing: Lana Ciarniello

a woman standing next to a stream with a bear in the background
Image: Shawn O’Connor

I am Co-Chair of the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) Bear Specialist Group’s (BSG) Human-Bear Conflicts Expert Team (HBCET). I have been Co-chair for two terms (last term and this term) and a HBCET member since 2011.

The BSG is part of the IUCN and the SSC. The goal of the BSG is to promote the conservation of bears and their habitats across their distribution world-wide, and to foster cooperative relationships with organizations such as the International Bear Association, other IUCN Specialist Groups, management agencies, educational institutions, captive facilities, citizen’s groups, and non-government conservation organizations (NGCO).

The HBCET exists to provide science-based technical assistance on the prevention or reduction of human-bear conflicts to create a positive effect on human-bear coexistence. Currently, the HBCET has 18 members, representing 4 Continents and 9 Countries (Canada, Croatia, Ecuador, Greece, India, Italy, Turkey, United States and Venezuela). Types of bear conflicts vary enormously around the world, and so do the feasible methods of mitigation, and our members work closely on HBC issues with 7 of the 8 bear species across all 4 continents where bears occur (Polar bears have their own HBC expert team). Our most recent activity was to host an International HBC workshop held in Quito, Ecuador, Nov 2017 (Full with waiting list).

My team’s current initiative is to design a Global Human–Bear Conflicts mitigation manual that captures the variation in HBC in a meaningful way and is useful to people working in the field as well as to governments.

As for me personally, I am an independent Research Scientist that mainly works with bears in BC.

Would you like to share your IUCN-related initiatives? Contact us at

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