The basis of this dissertation is the observed difficulty in founding several protected areas (PA) in Slovenia in the past decade, which were never actually founded due to opposition from the local stakeholders. There is an especially apparent gap between discourses on stakeholder participation on the one hand and the practice of insufficient inclusion of local stakeholders in PA founding process on the other. The purpose of the study was to provide suggestions on how to improve any future planning of local stakeholder participation in a PA, based on stakeholder identification for the Kamniško%Savinjske Alps Regional Park in designation and the analysis of their perception of the PA. The study was based on a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods. The stakeholders were classified based on their power, interest, and the legitimacy of their demands, in terms of their importance in the inclusion process of park formation, using numbers. As well as the park founders, local inhabitants proved to be key stakeholders in the PA formation process as well, as they perceive themselves as stakeholders involved in all phases of the park in designation. The study showed that the inhabitants would like to be involved in the founding and management of the park, but mostly in a passive manner. Semi%structured interviews with park inhabitants, landowners and park founders were analyzed according to grounded theory concepts. They showed that there are several interconnected factors influencing a stakeholder's perception of a PA. The perception of benefits from a future park has the strongest influence on the inhabitants' positive attitude towards a park. The positive attitude also depends on the extent of their inclusion in the founding process, past experience with institutions relating to the park and their trust towards the park founders. These results were also confirmed by discriminant analysis, which showed that inhabitants who support the founding of the park differ the most from its opponents in perceiving the park as having development potential. Support for the park is closely related to the stakeholders' trust towards the park founders and the way they were informed about their intent to found a park. The main finding of the study was that a positive perception of a PA among local inhabitants results in more successful development and nature conservation.