Special Session: Feedback, reflections, and learnings from developing a National Elephant Conservation Strategy

The justification and role of a National Elephant Conservation Strategy, the process followed, feedback from stakeholder engagements to date, as well as some reflections on the process, will be presented from the perspective of the steering committee members, followed by a facilitated discussion on the way forward and further inputs from the stakeholders and participants attending the session.

Both through its global status, as well as its conservation dependence and current poaching threats, the African elephant warrants special attention. Currently, within South Africa, the management of elephants is informed by the Norms and Standards for the Management of Elephants in South Africa, published in 2008. These norms and standards provide a 'how-to' tool for the management of elephants, but do not define a national common vision or goal for elephant conservation, neither do they provide a broader understanding of the role of elephants in society, beyond the current focus on managing elephants as a species.

This session will start with a presentation on how the National Elephant Conservation Strategy has emerged from a number of different contexts, and how we envisage the strategy to be useful in practice. This will be followed by a presentation on the process to date, highlighting the importance of a different consultation process, and the costs, benefits, and risks, of how we have approached the strategy development process. We will then provide some feedback on what elephants mean to people - key information, views, values, visions, and aspects that have emerged from the different stakeholders. The final presentation will provide a holistic summation of the process and outcomes across all elements, including gaps and opportunities. This will be followed by a facilitated discussion on the way forward and further input from stakeholder and participants attending the session.

Closed session : no external presentations will be included, but participation in the session during the Symposium is open to all. All submissions not linked to special sessions will be structured into logical groupings in the remainder of the programme. Please contact the Secretariat to be put in touch with the convener if you feel that you have a useful contribution to add to this special session.

Navigate between Special Sessions 

Data Management
Elephant Conservation
Indigenous Knowledge
Lead in Wildlife
Maloti-Drakensberg Exposition
PA Management Effectiveness
Protection via Partnerships
Species in Crisis
Vulture Conservation

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