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Sam H. Ham

Sam H. Ham, PhD, is Professor Emeritus and former director of the Center for International Training and Outreach and professor of communication psychology in the University of Idaho's Department of Conservation Social Sciences. Sam’s professional journey has been strongly defined by his commitment to providing professionals in the heritage tourism and sustainability communication fields the best and most current practical advice for making positive differences in the world through their work.

A prolific writer, his more than 400 publications include two best-selling books, Environmental Interpretation and Interpretation—Making a Difference on Purpose, which has been published in whole or part in 12 languages. He also has edited 10 other books for Fulcrum Publishing’s Applied Communication Series.

Sam’s TORE model of thematic communication is considered best practice across the world and continues to be applied successfully by protected area managers, interpreters and guides, tourism operators, museums, botanical gardens, zoos, and aquariums in nearly 60 countries. It also has become the basis for communication campaigns aimed at large-scale behavioral outcomes in municipal sustainability programs, as well as in travelers’ philanthropy.

Sam’s many honors include selection as a Fulbright Scholar and Fellow of the National Association for Interpretation. He also received Clemson University’s William C. Everhart Award for his lifetime contributions to heritage interpretation across the world, along with several academic distinctions from the University of Idaho, including the Award for Teaching Excellence, the university’s highest honor for teaching.

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