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Side Event

National Park Evaluation: The efficiency of German national park management and the applicability and transferability of the evaluation procedure at an international level

EUROPARC Germany (commissioned by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation)

Date and Time
15 October 2012 13:15 - 14:45

Eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP 11)

In 2004, the 7th Conference of Parties (COP7) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) agreed upon the Programme of Work on Protected Areas (PoWPA, VII/28). This programme is aimed at establishing and maintaining comprehensive, effectively managed, and ecologically representative national and regional systems of protected areas. National parks are selected hotspots of biodiversity in Germany and play a key role in biodiversity conservation. Furthermore, national parks can help to create new wilderness areas in the centre of Europe. This leads to the necessity for effective management of protected areas and particularly of national parks. Since 2008, EUROPARC Germany (the national umbrella organization for protected areas) has reviewed the management effectiveness of all fourteen German national parks on behalf of the German Government. Thus, Germany implements recommendations and decisions of the CBD. The Side Event will present to CBD-Parties and other stakeholders the development of common quality standards for German national parks. Moreover, it will explain the implemented method for measuring the quality of management according to these standards. The characteristics of the process will be highlighted, e.g. the formation of an independent external committee. The committee created an evaluation report for each of the fourteen national parks, including strengths and weaknesses as well as detailed recommendations for improving the quality of national park management. Recommended measures have already started to be implemented by the parks as a concrete result of such an extensive evaluation process. Opportunities for other countries in implementing a quality check for their national parks are highlighted. The results of this project could be achieved only by means of a joint effort by players at a local, regional and national level. They have been possible due to the support of the German federal states with the voluntary involvement of the national parks and financing through the German Federal Government.