Department faculty and alumnus team up to publish review in inaugural issue of International Journal of UNESCO Biosphere Reserves

January 30, 2017

Dr. Diane Matar and Prof. Brandon P. Anthony have published a review of the management effectiveness evaluation of UNESCO Biosphere Reserves in the inaugural issue of the International Journal of UNESCO Biosphere Reserves. Drawing upon their combined experience in protected area management effectiveness (PAME) evaluation and the biosphere reserves' Periodic Review (PR) process, Matar and Anthony demonstrate first that management effectiveness evaluation is still highly relevant and essential for the effective management and global expansion of protected areas and biosphere reserves networks. They also highlight that the PR report has been a soft evaluation tool that has led to improved implementation of the biosphere reserve concept by addressing mainly the design and planning aspects, but lacks results-based indicators that specifically measure delivery of objectives linked to the three core functions of biosphere reserves (conservation, sustainable development, and logistic support). A further identified weakness in the PR tool is that it is not designed to systematically integrate into an adaptive management cycle recommended for biosphere reserves. Drawing from lessons and advancements made in PAME evaluation, they conclude with targeted recommendations for the improvement of biosphere reserve management evaluation, in the perspective of enhancing contribution to the global sustainable development goals. Article can be accessed freely online here or as a .pdf here.