The links between policy and practice in natural resource management are often depicted as a cyclical and rational process. In reality, policymaking and implementation are often irrational, unpredictable and highly political. Many science and knowledge-based institutions undertake rigorous research with the aim of influencing policy, but often their influence is much less than intended. Understanding who influences policy at different levels, and how, is crucial to ensure that science is deployed most effectively so as to have an influence on conservation and natural resource management.
Conservation and Sustainable Development presents a variety of innovative ways that have been used to influence policy processes, from community pressure groups through elected and unelected leaders, to scientific discourse at the levels of directors of economic planning and conservation. This book analyzes experiences from a variety of conservation interventions by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and other agencies, primarily in Eastern Africa, and challenges the notion of policymaking as a cyclical process. It elaborates on this theme and presents an array of examples of how communities have influenced government, through direct lobbying, influence of parliamentarians, wielding of science and research, and inter-community dialogue, networking and solidarity. The authors present a framework for understanding and strategizing such work so that other institutions can identify where they can best add value.
"Communities and their representatives can learn a great deal from this book about how to present their ideas and experience effectively. Policy makers may find this book informative for improving the quality of their consultations and ensuring greater understanding and ownership of decision making processes."– From the Foreword by Eng. Mahboub Maalim, Executive the Intergovernmental Authority on Development.
1. Conservation as a Livelihood Strategy: Linking Policy with Practice 2. Enabling Communities to Mobilise Government Support 3. Mobilising Local Expertise Through Networking and Empowerment 4. Who Represents Practitioners in the Policy Process? 5. Partnering with Government Technical Experts to Influence Policy and Practice 6. Influence without Borders: Regional Approaches to Environmental Policy Dialogue 7. Shaping Policies: Science-Policy Interface in Natural Resources Management 8. Bringing Conservation Science to Life: the Role of Communication to Support Policy Influencing Processes in Africa 9. Strategizing to Influence Policy: a Framework for Practitioners Bibliography.