F&ES 767b / 2014-2015

Building a Conservation Toolkit: From Project Design to Evaluation

Credits: 3

Spring 2015: W, 5:40-8:30, Krn 321
Spring OCI Listing    

As wildlife and wildland conservation programs have multiplied and grown in size, conservation organizations have sought methods to improve strategic project planning, assessment of progress, cross-project comparison, learning of lessons, and transparency for donors.  To address these challenges, major non-profit organizations have collaboratively designed a set of decision-support tools for planning field projects and programs and for monitoring their progress, summarized in the “Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation” (http://cmp-openstandards.org ). Use of these tools has allowed organizations to more clearly articulate strategies, define priority actions, critically assess success, manage adaptively, and derive lessons – all of which helps to improve effectiveness and respond to donor interests. 
Students in this 3-credit course explore a mutually-reinforcing suite of these project tools: their underlying principles are introduced, students practice the techniques, and current case studies from field conservation are examined to explore tool utility.  Students synthesize use of these design tools in a final project or program proposal focused on a single case study of their choice.
The suite of decision-support tools covered in this course includes conceptual models for project design, situational and stakeholder assessments, threats and opportunities analysis, conservation target identification (particularly landscape species selection), and monitoring frameworks.  Students complete the seminar with experience in design of projects and their monitoring, as well as familiarity with budgeting. 
Limited to 12
Online Course Information: