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Conservation Gateway » Conservation Planning » The Basic Framework » Evolving Planning Methods

How Conservation Planning is Evolving at TNC

The Nature Conservancy is widely respected for its systematic approach to conservation (described in the Plan & Adapt section of the Conservation Gateway). While this conservation approach has served the organization well, both conservation and the Conservancy have changed dramatically over the past 15 years. The rapid pace of environmental change, the increasing spatial scale at which we work, the need to strengthen the linkage between human and ecological systems, and our focus on Global Challenges and Global Solutions are illustrative of many new challenges we face.

Join the Discussion. Read recent posts about conservation planning at TNC:

"Evolving Our Conservation Approach: Meeting Global Challenges with Local, Regional and Global Conservation Solutions" 1/24/2012

"Planning for Tomorrow’s Conservation Challenges: Recommendations of TNC’s Planning Evolution Team" 9/13/2011

"Evolution or Revolution? Planning Evolution Team Road Tests Early Recommendations with Peers" 6/8/2011

"Evolving our Conservation Planning" 12/15/2011

To meet these challenges and maintain our position as an industry leader in strategic conservation and adaptive management, it is essential that we evolve and improve our conservation approach. The Nature Conservancy’s Executive Team commissioned the Planning Evolution Team (PET) to do just that – evaluate our existing approach and make recommendations for its improvement.

The PET – a geographically and programmatically diverse group of TNC and external staff – interviewed more than 100 Conservancy staff to evaluate our current approach; researched the latest methods and tools on strategic, business and conservation planning; and identified many innovations inside and outside the Conservancy that could contribute to an improved conservation approach.

Here we outline our principal recommendations, provide a justification for the recommended changes, identify examples of projects that are implementing these recommendations, outline methods or applications that are critical to improving our approach, and suggest improvements in project and program management. Evolving the core guidance, methods and tools will take 1-2 years; TNC staff, can download a brief implementation plan here.

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