Evaluations of Protected Areas

Check available evaluations per country or per type of evaluation…

Click on the name of a country to see and download the evaluations that have been done in that area…


  List of available evaluations per type

• Download METT evaluations of African PAs

• Download EoH evaluations of African PAs

• Download RAPPAM evaluations of African PAs

Evaluations of protected areas? …What for?

PA evaluations analyze step by step the current management framework of protected areas in order to point out potential deadlocks in the management process and in order to also highlight successful management practices that should be carried on in the future.

In fine PA’s evaluation enables to prioritize the actions to undertake in order to improve the management of the PA in the short/mid-term by designing appropriate solutions to overcome the sticking point identified.

photo 1 evaluation

“Assessing effectiveness” should be understood as a means of:

1) Measuring the performance of a protected area and its periphery (or a protected area system) compared to its aims.

The performance of the protected area (or protected area system) concerns its results and impacts, including its classic functions of conservation, environmental education, recreation etc., but also its cultural, social or economic functions…

2) Taking decisions that are adapted and evolved in relation to this performance and ensuring the context of the protected area evolves.

The context is the framework for implementing management of the protected area (or the system). This is not fixed and should evolve in relation to advances in knowledge and the evolution of the rationales for the protected area.

3) Improve, thereby, achievement of the objectives.

The objectives are those identified during the process of designating the protected area and planning etc. and depend on the means and support that the area benefits from. But beyond that, they take account of functions (social, economic and cultural development, recreation, education, etc.) which are not expressly taken into account by management.

4) Be accountable to all partners in management of the protected area (including local).

The assessment provides a measure of the benefits (or the costs) of management of the protected area and a comparison with the efforts undertaken (by management, donors, people). This measure is also the basis for identifying additional useful means.

Types of evaluation tools used

Numerous actors in the world of conservation, such as WWF, TNC or the World Heritage Centre of UNESCO have developed assessment methods. They are numerous (more than forty) but have a common focus: the framework developed by the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA).

NB: To find out more: download the IUCN guidelines on management effectiveness.

photo 2 evaluationThe choice of a specific tool depended on the scale on which the PA managers wished to work on and on the level of details they needed to go into. More than 40 different evaluation tools exist around the world. 3 of them have mainly been used within IUCN PAPACO’s work:

Evaluations at the scale of one PA (parks, reserves, community based reserves, etc.):

  • Management Effectiveness Tracking Tool (METT) has been widely used as it is an quick and easily repeatable tool to be adopted by PA managers at site level;
  • Enhance our Heritage Toolkit (EOH) is more detailed and onerous tool that has been used on World Heritage sites at site level.

Evaluations at the scale of a network of protected areas (national, regional or transboundary):

  • Rapid Assessment and Prioritization of Protected Areas (RAPPAM) is a quick and easily repeatable assessment tool dedicated to analyze the functioning of a whole PA network at national or regional level.

This is a voluntary based approach from PA managers. Each assessment (regardless to the type of tool used) involves all stakeholders related to the protected area, and is carried out in close collaboration with managers. The approach is totally participative. The proposed process is not subject to any constraint or condition, except making all results publicly accessible.

Recommendations from these assessments have, for example, been used by certain countries to establish their priorities for Medium Size projects of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) for implementing work programs on protected areas under the Convention on Biodiversity.