STRI Agreement with the Kuna regarding the Study Project for the Management of the Wildlands of Kuna Yala (PEMASKY)

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The Kuna, an indigenous group in Panama, set aside an area of the Comarca, their autonomous reserve, for protection of its biodiversity. This project, called PEMASKY, attracted the attention of the international conservation and research community, including STRI. This agreement between STRI and the Association of Kuna Employees, the overseers of PEMASKY, was meant to encourage cooperation between the two groups in managing the Kuna Wildlands. STRI agreed to provide the Kuna with advice, equipment, including vehicles, and training in conservation and biological research methods, as well as encourage visiting scientists to visit the area while in Panama, something the Kuna hoped would encourage the growth of eco-tourism in the region. In return, they were allowed to conduct scientific investigations in the wildland. The Kuna provided administrative support and facilities, as well help in defraying some expenses of the research.


  • Study Project for the Management of the Wildlands of Kuna Yala (PEMASKY)
  • Kuna General Congress
  • Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI)


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions
  • Contract


In Spanish only

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 329, Assistant Secretary for Science, c. 1963-1986, Records, Box 122, Folder 4 (Documents)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,




  • Protected areas
  • Tourism
  • Rain forest ecology
  • Conservation and restoration
  • Tourists
  • Ecology
  • Biodiversity
  • Natural resources
  • Indians of Central America
  • Agreements
  • Research
  • Biological diversity





Physical description

Number of pages: 8; Page Numbers: 2-9

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