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Developing a framework for design, monitoring and evaluating pilot Nature Improvement Areas: Phase 1 Scoping Study - WC1029

This Phase 1 Scoping Study will run in parallel with the competition to select the first 12 Nature Improvement Areas (NIAs), that will receive funding, and the initial stages of their establishment. Further information about the competition can be found at

The scoping study will interact with and support the partnerships bidding to be NIAs who have made it through to the second round (around 20), in order to maximise the potential to learn from the process of establishing NIAs and to establish a fit-for-purpose monitoring and evaluation framework which can be implemented within the NIAs, by the NIA partnerships. The project will also identify requirements for ongoing support, outreach, additional research and development to assist monitoring and evaluation of the initial 12 NIAs (that would also be suitable for extension to other NIAs), which may lead to a subsequent project (Phase 2) to meet these requirements.
To develop and promote an evidence-based approach to the design, monitoring and evaluation of NIAs that, in the longer term, will enable assessment of the individual and aggregated contribution of the initial 12 NIAs towards meeting outcomes included in the Natural Environment White Paper, the England Biodiversity Strategy, and the international targets agreed in Nagoya, as well as other national and international biodiversity commitments, such as the European Landscape Convention.
The main objectives are:
A. Determination of the evidence base for NIA design, monitoring and evaluation
B. Development of a framework for monitoring and evaluation of NIAs
C. Development of a data capture system and analytical tools (optional, depending on outcomes of A) and B).
D. Knowledge transfer and communications
E. Provision of suggestions for further work
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : WC1029 NIA ME evid4 FINAL   (368k)
• FRP - Final Report : WC1029 NIA ME evid4 v2   (311k)
• OTH - Other : WC1029 and WC1061 LINKS to Reports   (26k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2011

To: 2012

Cost: £141,624
Contractor / Funded Organisations
A E A Technology plc (AEA)
Nature conservation