Welcome to the WRi

The Wildland Research Institute (WRi) aims to identify and elucidate the requirements, strategies and policies for a transition to a greater presence of wild landscapes within the wider land use continuum of Britain and Europe (click here). The broad activities of the Institute combine social and natural sciences, as well as the arts and literary world, in leading-edge, interdisciplinary research. Our main research areas and expertise include:

  • Mapping and modelling wildness attributes and wilderness quality
  • Landscape evaluation
  • Re-wilding and habitat restoration
  • Policy analysis and advice
  • Tracking developments in European wilderness protection (click here)


A Vision for a Wilder Europe: An updated second edition of the Vision for a Wilder Europe (2015) document is now available here.

European Wilderness Register published: A new European Wilderness Register and Mapping Indicator has been published. The work carried out by WRi with partners Alterra and EWS was funded by the EEA/EU. The report is available online here.

Scottish wild land Policy: based on WRi methods and approaches to wildness mapping, wild land and a new wild land map developed by SNH has made it in to the final version of the Scottish National Planning Framework – see here for more details.

Ongoing projects:

  • Developing the EU’s new Wilderness Register (with partners Alterra and EWS).
  • Developing web-based participatory mapping tools for visitor experience in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska (with partners Leopold Institute, Missoula, Montana).
  • Mapping wildlife corridors using GIS and participatory methods in La Primavera Biosphere Reserve, Mexico. See video here.
  • Mapping wildness in England and Wales.
  • The value of tribal engagement for monitoring the effects of fire and fuels management on culturally significant plants of the Colville National Forest, Northeast Washington.
  • Animation of spread of wind farms and their visual impact across Scotland.
  • A review of the socio-economic and environmental benefits of wildland in Scotland (with partners in SRUC and CMC, Scotland).

Latest publication: Deary, H., & Tin, T. (2015). Antarctic Treaty Consultative Parties’ engagement in wilderness protection at home and in Antarctica. The Polar Journal, (ahead-of-print), 1-33. DOI:10.1080/2154896X.2015.1068537

Quote of the week: “Plans to protect air and water, wilderness and wildlife are in fact plans to protect man.”  Stuart Udall, US Secretary of Interior 1961-69