Thanks to everyone who made it out to the Raleigh and Savannah indicators workshops. It was great to catch up with old friends and meet a bunch of new people. Since Mallory and Ken’s blog post this week are talking more broadly about the workshops, I thought I’d focus on one specific question: How did the draft process change as a result of those workshops?

Here are the three major changes made by the indicator team:

  • More context on how indicators will be used and what they should represent. This includes a very simple conceptual model of major landscape stressors affecting ecosystem integrity. A number of folks in the workshops asked for some additional detail and improved descriptions. 
  • Reduced number of indicators per habitat. This suggestion came up at both workshops and also came up in some of the “lessons learned” talks from various organizations. The big idea was that it’s much easier to start small and add on if needed than try to reduce a list that’s too big to be manageable.
  • Some merged habitat types to simplify the indicator process and better align with existing habitat standards. In addition to the suggestion from the workshops to reduce the overall number of indicators, folks also wanted improved descriptions of specific habitat types and how they match to existing standards.

So, as you can see, the workshops weren’t just a great chance to talk about measuring conservation success in general but also resulted in some great improvements to the process for how we collectively measure conservation success for the South Atlantic.

The steering committee is reviewing the updated process right now so expect to see the final version of the process soon.