Protected Area Management Effectiveness (PAME) evaluations, can be defined as: “the assessment of how well protected areas are being managed – primarily the extent to which management is protecting values and achieving goals and objectives" (Hockings et al. 2006). Evaluation of management effectiveness is recognised as a vital component of responsive, pro-active protected area management. The need for national and regional data sets on protected area management effectiveness is reflected in conservation policy. For example, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Conference of the Parties (COP) 10 Decision X/31 calls for “…Parties to…expand and institutionalize management effectiveness assessments to work towards assessing 60 per cent of the total area of protected areas by 2015 using various national and regional tools, and report the results into the global database on management effectiveness".
Since the 1990s, a range of methods have been developed and applied to assess Protected Area Management Effectiveness (PAME) at both site and system levels. Most PAME methodologies are built up around the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) framework for protected area management (Figure 1). Evaluations that assesses each of the elements highlighted in Figure 1 (and the links between them) should provide a relatively comprehensive picture of management effectiveness.
Fig 1: The IUCN WCPA framework for assessing management effectiveness of protected areas (Hockings et al. 2006).
The substantial body of assessment results from these ongoing efforts have been consolidated into the Global Database on Protected Area Management Effectiveness (GD-PAME). The GD-PAME was started as a research database at the University of Queensland in 2006 under a programme jointly funded by WWF and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and is now a joint project between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It is managed and maintained by UNEP-WCMC, in collaboration with governments, non-governmental organisations, academia and industry. The GD-PAME is a global data base comprising many thousands of assessments of protected area management effectiveness(PAME) collated from around the world, which provides a 'common reporting format' allowing the cross analysis of PAME information from a range of different assessment methodologies.
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