What is the Southwest Fire Science Consortium?

The consortium is a way for managers, scientists, and policy makers to interact and share science. Our goal is to see the best science used to make management decisions and scientists working on the questions managers need answered. The Southwest is one of the most fire-dominated regions of the US, and the Consortium is the only regional organization focused on fire research and information dissemination across agency, administrative, and state boundaries. We try to bring together localized efforts to develop scientific information and to disseminate that to practitioners on the ground through an inclusive and open process. Please join us by attending a field trip or workshop, reading and sharing the materials on this website, and/or contributing to the fire conversation by submitting a proposal for an event or product.

Guiding Principles:

  • Be inclusive, making sure all relevant partners have the opportunity to be involved
  • Serve as neutral science partners
  • Be customer driven, both in how they are structured and how they function
  • Operate collaboratively, fostering joint management and science communication
  • Be innovative, pursuing new and creative ways to disseminate knowledge
  • Facilitate the flow in fire science

Key Objectives:

  • Disseminate information and build relationships between scientists, practitioners, and managers
  • List and describe existing research and syntheses
  • Develop methods to assess the quality and applicability of research
  • Demonstrate research on the ground
  • Build place-based adaptive management partnerships that promote adoption of fire science findings by fire, fuel, and land managers
  • Develop mechanisms to assess new research, synthesis, or validation needs

Our regional Southwest Fire Science Consortium is built around three key questions:

1 What do people need to know? Information needs can be assessed through workshops, organization of a community of practice of wildland fire professionals and surveys.

2 What information is already known (synthesis of existing science) and how should it be communicated (web, publications, workshops, courses)?

3 What are the key information gaps between what we need to know and what is already known? This question leads to the identification of critical areas for new research and adaptive management experiments.