Native American and Alaska Native Environmental Collaboration and Conflict Resolution Program

The U.S. Institute's Native American and Alaska Native Environmental Program helps increase the appropriate and effective use of collaborative problem-solving and conflict resolution in environmental matters involving Native American and Alaska Native communities and federal agencies.

The program focuses on environmental, natural resource, public land and trust land issues where one or more tribes, in addition to a federal agency or interest, are directly involved. Service areas include:

  • Environmental planning;
  • Government-to-government consultation;
  • Policy development and implementation;
  • National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) actions; and
  • Consultations related to traditional cultural property and sacred sites.

For example, the U.S. Institute has provided consensus-building and mediation services to:

Provide facilitation support for stakeholder and tribal engagement for coastal marine planning workshops in several of the regions established by the National Ocean Policy, including the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, West Coast, and Pacific Islands. Read more...

Assist the Department of the Interior's (DOI) Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform in its solicitation of recommendations regarding the DOI trust management and administration of nearly $4 billion in Native American trust assets. Read more...

Assist the Department of Agriculture and the Forest Service in developing a collaboration and communication strategy and facilitating regional listening sessions with Native American and Alaska Native communities and tribal leaders to review existing policies and examine the effectiveness of current laws and regulations to ensure a consistent level of protection for Native American Sacred Sites located on National Forest lands... Read more

The U.S. Institute also manages the Native Dispute Resolution Network, the only national network of dispute resolvers with expertise in culturally appropriate collaborative dispute resolution and collaboration across Tribal, Federal, and State governments. Read more...

Staff Contact Information:
Sarah Palmer, Senior Program Manager (

Click on the link below to print or download a booklet of case briefings.
Program Overview and Case Briefings Booklet


Sometimes questions are more important than answers.
Nancy Willard,
American poet

Did you know...?

The U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution can provide services on any case that involves a U.S. federal government agency. If you are facing a conflict that doesn’t involve a federal government interest, we can still help you find qualified practitioners. Just contact us. You can also search our National Roster.