The present article emerged at the interface of transdisciplinary research and practice with the Slovak State Nature Conservancy (SNC) and local stakeholders. The authors would therefore like to thank the many initiative people for their engagement for local action on the ground. While we cannot list them all, we would like to mention the mayor of Ubla, Nadeshda Sirkova, and the mayor of Zboj, Ladislav Ladomirjak, both in Poloniny National Park, as well as farmer Jan Barak from Snohy, in Poľana Biosphere Reserve. We thank Zuzana Okániková of Slovak NGO “pronator” as well for developing a spin-off i.e. a twinning between Entlebuch Biosphere Reserve in Switzerland and Poľana Biosphere Reserve in Slovakia. The process of adapting the Swiss baseline methodology to the needs of largely protected area management in Slovakia benefitted crucially from our excellent collaboration with the University of Žilina. We extend our heartfelt thanks to Prof. Dr. Marián Janiga and Dr. Jaroslav Solár of the Institute of High Mountain Biology in the High Tatras. The authors thank the coordinator of this Swiss Contribution program at SNC, Ivan Koubek, for networking and fostering exchange between conservationists and local stakeholders in the Slovak pilot regions, as well as between Slovak and Swiss colleagues, mayors, farmers, and researchers of CDE at the University of Bern.