Futurepast Seminars Build Skills In Market Economics

In the years since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the new independent states have pursued a transition from a planned, administrative-command economy to a free market economic system. The transition has been neither easy nor painless for citizens in Russia and Ukraine, the other western republics, the central Asian republics, and the states of the Caucasus region.

Futurepast: Inc. has designed and conducted several programs to assist managers in Russia and Ukraine learn about market economics. Examples of our programs include managing businesses for economic and environmental gain for the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and construction management for the Centre for Cross-Border Education “Practic,” a Moscow-based educational organization.

In November 1996 Futurepast conducted a seminar in Kyiv for the managers of Ukraine’s national parks and nature preserves. The seminar focused on solutions to the economic difficulties that national parks and nature preserves are currently experiencing. Training faculty and participants discussed the importance of business planning, market research and marketing planning, and the passage of necessary enabling legislation.

Examples of the kinds of topics explored at this seminar include:

  • the development of concessionary contracting mechanisms to provide services such as food and lodging for visitors to national parks and nature preserves
  • procurement and contract management;
  • the formation of partnerships between parks, preserves, and localities and entities such as airlines, travel organizations, and community-based organizations to expand tourism in Ukraine.

This program generated a high degree of interest because of its focus on economic development for administrative units of government that are currently seriously underfunded. The need to restructure and to develop alternative sources of financing received additional emphasis when Mr. Yuriy Kostenko, Minister of Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety, visited the seminar and addressed the group. In his remarks he encouraged park and preserve directors to innovate, and urged his assembled park directors to learn from the experience of the US and other countries.

ukranian-marketAt a November 1996 seminar in Kyiv, Ukraine, National Park and Nature Preserve directors pose for a picture on the occasion of the visit of Mr. Yuriy Kostenko, Minister of Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety. Standing in front of the tables at center are, from left to right, Nikolai Stechenko, Head of General Administration of the National Parks and Nature Preserves of Ukraine, Minister Kostenko, Alexandre Nikitin of the National Natural Park “Podilski Tovtri,” and Futurepast faculty Steve Corker and John Shideler.

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