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Posted: Oct 01, 2014

Online resource to support the work of biodiversity conservation organizations

(Nanowerk News) A free online resource, launched today (1 October), will help conservation organisations share expertise and tools, aiding them in addressing some of the planet’s most challenging conservation issues.

Capacityforconservation.org is a free online resource designed to act as a central hub where biodiversity conservation organisations can download tools, contribute their expertise, and learn from one another to strengthen their ability to address complex conservation challenges.

Knowing the best way for an organisation to develop to become a sustainable and resilient entity, or even understanding the questions the organisation needs to ask of itself in order to start this development, can be a daunting challenge.

The new resource recognises that conservation organisations often ask similar questions as to how they can best address the challenges they are tackling – whether it’s a local organisation on the Kenyan coast seeking to improve the sustainable management of marine and coastal resources or a grassroots non-government organisation trying to tackle the trade in threatened species in Vietnam.

Capacityforconservation.org provides resources such as published reports, case studies and indicators that these types of organisations can use to help them answer their questions, as well as a global platform for organisations to share best practice with one another. Having a single source of information and a platform where organisations can share their experiences of undertaking their own development will be a significant benefit to these organisations, and, in turn, the conservation actions they are undertaking.
Christina Garcia, Director of the Ya’axché Conservation Trust, Belize, and a user of capacityforconservation.org said: “Accessing different tools on the Capacity for Conservation website allowed Ya’axché to realise the experiences we have are shared among organisations around the world.”
In addition to access to resources and examples of best practice, capacityforconservation.org also offers self-led organisational health checks for conservation organisations. The results of these health checks indicate areas where organisations could consider improving their capacity, along with recommendations for tools on the website that the organisation could use to do so. An organisation that needs to work on its financial management, for example, would be directed to over 25 resources, ranging from a guide to budgetary management to a document about risk analysis.
Professor Nigel Leader-Williams, Director of Conservation Leadership at the Department of Geography, is a member of the consortium who developed capacityforconservation.org. “The site seeks to offer conservation organisations around the world the ability to self-check their capacity to meet the immense organisational challenges they face in saving biodiversity globally.
“Based around an easy to navigate and attractive interface, capacityforconservation.org has the potential to make a real difference to the ability of conservation organisations to implement conservation actions on the ground. Developed by a group of partners in the Cambridge Conservation Initiative, the resource draws on the experience within CCI and its networks to offer a unique resource to conservation practitioners world-wide.”
Capacityforconservation.org has been developed by the Capacity for Conservation Collaboration, a joint initiative between the Cambridge Conservation Initiative’s partners BirdLife International, Fauna & Flora International, the Tropical Biology Association and the University of Cambridge’s Department of Geography, with funds from the Cambridge Conservation Initiative’s Collaborative Fund for Conservation.
Capacityforconservation.org currently contains over 140 tools, resources and case studies gathered by leading conservation organisations. Resources are available in 18 languages, and work is under way to translate the site into Spanish, Portuguese and Italian.
Source: University of Cambridge
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