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Park Management Informed by Scientific Information – Key Aspects of Network Approach to Monitoring Monitoring plays a key, central role in natural resource stewardship, performance management, and meeting the NPS mission for all parks with NR.
Park Management Informed by Scientific Information – Key Aspects of Network Approach to Monitoring
If park managers do not see the relevance of the monitoring program for providing information for performance management, planning, decision-making, interpretation, research, etc., then we need to do a better job of explaining/ marketing the program!
Initial funding will not allow comprehensive monitoring in all parks. Systems-based monitoring of physical and biological resources including the ecological processes that shaped and continue to act on the park.
Ecosystems… just the sound of it, gives me the willies.
An alternative to “One Size Fits All”
Servicewide Core Variables
Network/Ecosystem Core Variables
We need to be certain that changes detected by monitoring actually are occurring in nature and not simply a result of measurements being taken by different people or in slightly different ways
Simple, clear public message
Use Assessment by experts to translate scientific findings for policy and decision-making
“Improve park management through greater reliance on scientific data”
Reporting the Results of I&M EffortsMaking Data, Information Available for Decision-Makers, Scientists, Educators, and various Constituency Groups
“Decision makers and planners will use the best available scientific and technical information and scholarly analysis to identify appropriate management actions for protection and use of park resources”.
– NPS Management Policies
“A sophisticated knowledge of resources and their condition is essential. The Service must gain this knowledge through extensive collaboration with other agencies and academia, and its findings must be communicated to the public. For it is the broader public that will decide the fate of these resources.”
Source: Rethinking the National Parks for the 21st Century. A Report of the National Park System Advisory Board, July 2001
Information is the common currency among all of these park stewardship activities
Park Management Informed by Scientific Information –Integration with other Park Operations
(Adapted from National Water Quality Monitoring Council)
Studies funded by park base, NRPP
Search Tools for Finding Things in the Hopper:
Natural Resource Data Portal
Routine analysis and reporting by I&M networks and cooperators
Occasional analyses, synthesis by parks, with funding & expertise assistance from WCA & I&M
The 32 NPS networks are designing a system for scientific data collection, analysis, and reporting that is unprecedented in the history of the National Park Service
“While the Service downsizing several years ago shifted greater responsibility and authority to the parks, this decentralization did not obviate the need for the Service to operate as one agency, rather than 378 independent parks, 7 autonomous regions, and a Washington office. While the Committee is not advocating a centralization of all Service decision-making, a concerted effort must be made at all levels of Park Service management, including park superintendents and regional directors, to exercise greater responsibility in implementing programs with an eye towards servicewide goals, and not individual whims.”
The 32 park networks are large enough for efficiencies through sharing staff & funding
Networks are small and local enough to respond to park-level issues and data needs and allow for local cost-leveraging opportunities
Long-term ecological program designed to:
Routinely collect, manage, analyze, and report data on the condition or “health” of a modest set of natural resources.
Provide some local scientific expertise to all 270+ parks through the use of shared positions.
Maximize the use and relevance of the data for managing parks, and gain efficiencies through collaboration, cost-sharing across NPS programs and with other agencies through a flexible but coordinated approach.
Make data and information more available and useful by promoting good data management/analysis/reporting practices.
One of several programs that:
Provides data, information, expertise for park planning.
Provides data, information, expertise for natural resource assessments and GPRA goal reporting.
Provides information to visitors and the public, “for it is the broader public that will decide the fate of these resources”.
Encourages collaboration/partnerships with the scientific community.