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LCC Network convenes to address National Academy of Sciences recommendations

More than 60 LCC staff members and partners from across the continent met in St. Louis to discuss next steps in response to recommendations outline by the National Academy of Sciences in a 2015 report.

In December 2015, the National Academy of Science released a review of Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, which affirmed that LCCs play a key role in addressing a need for a landscape approach to meeting the nation’s conservation challenges.

While the Academy pointed to many early accomplishments that demonstrate how the LCC program is already helping to improve decision making for conservation through research, tools, and coordination, the report also identified areas for further improvement. In particular, this included enhancing coordination with partners around priorities, and refining performance measures to help realize conservation outcomes at individual and network-wide scales.

Last week, more than 60 LCC partners and staff members from across the continent -- including North Atlantic LCC Science Coordinator Scott Schwenk, Science Delivery Coordinator Steve Fuller, and Steering Committee Chairman Ken Elowe -- met in St. Louis, Mo., to coordinate progress in response the recommendations outlined in the review. 

The group focused specifically on two topics: performance measures and landscape conservation design. For the first topic, meeting participants developed a preliminary set of performance measures integrated with a revised Network strategic plan. The performance measures are intended to help the Network track and improve its effectiveness and conservation impacts.

For the second topic, the group reviewed and discussed guidance intended to enhance landscape conservation designs facilitated by LCCs, such as the Connect the Connecticut project supported by the North Atlantic LCC.

Based on input during the workshop, and following additional review, performance measures and landscape conservation design guidance will be finalized in the fall of 2016.

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