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Select Strategy or Strategies

  1. Iden­ti­fy strate­gies that, if suc­cess­ful­ly pur­sued, at least meet the min­i­mum goal, and have the great­est ROI.
  • Select­ed strat­e­gy or strate­gies, with results chains, and defined expect­ed outcomes

You and your team have done your home­work, and now it’s time to decide on a strat­e­gy, or pos­si­bly mul­ti­ple strate­gies. These con­sid­er­a­tions will help you nar­row the field.


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  • Evaluate potential contribution toward goals for each strategy.

    • Make a table.

  • Avoid low ‘conservation ROI’ strategies.

    • Expand your table.

  • Analyze risk of failure, financial and reputational risk and likelihood of negative impacts on vulnerable people.

    • Conduct a “pre-mortem.”

    • Assess the evidence that the strategy will work.

    • Pursue high impact/high risk strategies, with appropriate contingencies.

    • Assess whether required funds will be available, and the consequences of their lack of availability.

    • Evaluate reputational risk of partnerships, especially with corporations.

    • Eliminate strategies that have unacceptably high risk.

  • Compare and select strategy or strategies.

    • Consider both ROI and achievement of minimum goal.

    • Is any one strategy best against all goals? If so, select that strategy.

    • If there are tradeoffs among strategies, consider whether some goals are more important than others.

Minimum Standard Questions
  1. Will selected strategies, if successful, achieve the minimum conservation goals?
  2. Are investments allocated to strategies with relatively high conservation ROI?
  3. Do high-risk strategies have appropriately high reward if successful? Be sure to evaluate who is bearing the risk and who stands to benefit from the reward.
  4. Are mitigation plans in place for dealing with risks associated with unintended consequences, e.g. reputational risk, and risk of impacts to indigenous peoples and vulnerable populations? Were the mitigation plans developed through a participatory process with the primary stakeholders who may be affected?
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What if no strategies can be identified that can achieve conservation or human well-being goals ?
What if negative impacts to vulnerable populations cannot be avoided or eliminated?

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