Building collegial international relationships is an important aspect of conservation and conservation education. The relationship relies on researchers understanding the local context of the conservation project and the sociocultural perspectives of all partners. Therefore, we situated our case study within sociocultural theory. Our case study focuses on the relationships and project work which developed between a biologist/science educator at the University of Bengkulu in Bengkulu, Sumatra, Indonesia, and a science education professor at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, Greensboro, NC, USA, who shared longtime interests in herpetology. Employing the sociocultural perspective, we describe the background of each University group leader and how their previous experiences led to the development of a partnership focused on turtle conservation. In this case study, we seek to understand the social and cultural development of the researchers’ relationship as they teamed to address the ex situ conservation challenges of working with terrestrial and semiaquatic turtles. An examination of the researchers’ partnership provides a framework for the analysis of the work accomplished and remaining and offers insights to others interested in collaborative international conservation projects.

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