Creating restoration landscapes: partnerships in large-scale conservation in the UK

Adams, William M.; Hodge, Ian D.; Macgregor, Nicholas A. and Sandbrook, Lindsey C. (2016). Creating restoration landscapes: partnerships in large-scale conservation in the UK. Ecology and Society, 21(3), article no. 1.



It is increasingly recognized that ecological restoration demands conservation action beyond the borders of existing protected areas. This requires the coordination of land uses and management over a larger area, usually with a range of partners, which presents novel institutional challenges for conservation planners. Interviews were undertaken with managers of a purposive sample of large-scale conservation areas in the UK. Interviews were open-ended and analyzed using standard qualitative methods. Results show a wide variety of organizations are involved in large-scale conservation projects, and that partnerships take time to create and demand resilience in the face of different organizational practices, staff turnover, and short-term funding. Successful partnerships with local communities depend on the establishment of trust and the availability of external funds to support conservation land uses. We conclude that there is no single institutional model for large-scale conservation: success depends on finding institutional strategies that secure long-term conservation outcomes, and ensure that conservation gains are not reversed when funding runs out, private owners change priorities, or land changes hands.

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