We at ParksWatch believe that an in-depth
understanding of the true conservation status of parks requires thorough on-the-ground
research. Through these first-hand accounts, we are able to uncover information
not readily available in other park databases that elucidates the nature and
extent of external and internal threats to parks.
The data gathered from our on-site visits
and background research are compiled in summarized reports called Park
Profiles that synthesize the substantial amount of information that results
from our park evaluations.
The centerpiece of each profile is a
multi-disciplinary analysis, or diagnosis, of the state of the park based on
an analysis of threats, local socioeconomic conditions, management needs, relationships
with local, regional and national organizations, and other such crucial matters.
Using IUCN's definition of a protected
area, "An area of land and/or sea especially dedicated to the protection
and maintenance of biological diversity, and of natural and associated cultural
resources, and managed through legal or other effective means," ParksWatch
uses the following categories to assess the status of protected areas:
The protected area is currently failing to protect and maintain biological diversity;
or, there is an extremely high risk that the protected area will fail to protect
and maintain biological diversity in the immediate future. Urgent solutions
There is a very high risk that the protected area will fail to protect and maintain
biological diversity in the near future. Remedial action is needed.
There is a high risk that the protected area will fail to protect and maintain
biological diversity in the medium-term future. Monitoring is needed.
Currently not threatened
The area has been evaluated and does not satisfy the criteria for any of the
categories critically threatened, threatened, or vulnerable. There is no evidence
that gives reason to believe that the protected area will fail to protect and
maintain biological diversity in the near future.
Each diagnosis includes a set of recommended
solutions to alleviate or remedy the park's most pressing needs, and the document
is made available to all relevant stakeholders, including the park administrators
and the various organizations involved in park management.