Following her attendance at the Private Land Conservation Conference in Melbourne last month, Bec reflects on the experience and what it means for monitoring and evaluation.
Last month I attended the Private Land Conservation Conference here in Melbourne. Coordinated by the Australian Land Conservation Alliance, the conference brought together a couple of hundred environmental, land management and conservation professionals from Australia and overseas.
This included academics and researchers, policy practitioners and government officers, landholders and land managers, philanthropists and non-government representatives… as well as budding evaluators!
The two-day conference was a fantastic opportunity to meet and learn from experts in the field and the people getting their hands dirty with conservation work every day.
I heard inspiring stories about innovative covenant arrangements and land management practices, and conservation programs with a range of social, environmental and economic benefits… as well as stories about the urgent and increasing need to continue making progress in private land conservation.
The biggest take-home message from the conference for me was that monitoring and evaluation in the land conservation space has never been more important. It is critical to effectively demonstrate the value of the range of conservation work happening in Australia and around the world to continue making progress and increase momentum.
Emerging from this year, an important focus for next year’s conference will be monitoring and evaluation. I’m already looking forward to the 2017 Private Land Conservation Conference in Hobart – any excuse to visit my hometown!