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Looking to the future

Looking to the future

Looking to the future
Alexandre Caron

BY MICHEL DE GARINE-WITCHATITSKY, CIRAD, RP-PCP

First, the diversity of stakeholders involved, ranging from researchers, academics, government technical services, NGOs, private consultants, donors, as well as representatives of local communities, demonstrated that communication between these diverse stakeholders is indeed possible, and of paramount importance to pave the way for successful TFCA endeavours. Future conferences should make sure that all stakeholders, including local communities and decision makers, are invited and given the opportunity to express their views.

Second, the diversity of subjects addressed during the conference was huge, ranging, for example, from painted dog ecology, bovine tuberculosis, res nullius legal status of wildlife, and environmental education at primary school level. The temptation would be to narrow the scope of the presentations accepted, for the sake of coherence.

Yet the conference proved that this diversity of presentations, attended by all participants as there were no parallel sessions, was rich and represented a real eye-opener for most of us. Future conferences should preserve this multidisciplinarity, going beyond OneHealth/ EcoHealth, with sessions dedicated to animal health, human health (we need more!), agriculture, ecology and conservation, law, governance and institutions, education… and more, as long as good quality presentations specifically address TFCA issues.

Third, TFCAs are extremely complex entities because their ambition is to associate numerous actors managing numerous resources, with divergent views or interests. Future approaches to TFCA development should fully acknowledge this complexity, and avoid the temptation to deny it in order to propose over-simplistic solutions. Future conferences should dedicate a full session to integrate perspectives on these complex systems, possibly using socio-ecological systems and resilience frameworks.

Against all odds, this conference has shown that communication barriers can indeed be broken and real cooperation between parties can be achieved by providing appropriate forums in order to listen to each others’ views and perspectives, and to work towards collaborative constructive solutions… indeed an important principle for future TFCA developments!

More from this issue:
ZT17 (June 2014) - Main Menu
ZT17 (June 2014) - Full Content Listing

More on transfrontier parks from this issue of the Zambezi Traveller:
Towards one health
After the fences came down
Between man and nature
Solutions for conflict with lions
Pomp and ceremony at KAZA event
Tourism, beef or both?
Simalaha gains momentum
Looking to the future