Horizon Scan

Horizon Scan

Share your Thoughts on Research Needs: Parks and Protected Areas Horizon Scan

Park and protected areas managers need knowledge of the challenges and opportunities that may influence the stewardship and conservation of protected areas as they make decisions for the future. One methodology that is often used to identify knowledge gaps and emerging issues is the horizon scan. Parks Canada and the Canadian Parks Collective for Innovation and Leadership are teaming up to undertake a horizon scan to inform the management of protected areas in Canada. This scan will be conducted in close collaboration with partners, so that results obtained benefit all and support conservation planning and actions across the country.  Parks Canada will use the results of the horizon scan to inform its own research agenda.

You are invited to rank the issues that were submitted!

Deadline December 22, 2020

Parks Canada is collaborating with the Canadian Parks Collective for Innovation and Leadership (CPCIL) to conduct a Horizon Scan. Using the Horizon Scan methodology (e.g., see Sutherland 2020 to learn more), the scan will identify emerging issues with the potential to affect ecosystems and ecosystem services in protected areas across Canada.
Initial input from the broader protected and conserved areas community and researchers across Canada was received. The protected areas community is invited to rank the submitted issues. Once completed, the results will be published and shared on the CPCIL platform.

The Conservation Through Reconciliation Partnership (CRP) is advising Parks Canada to identify issues that are of importance to Parks and Protected areas in the country. In particular, the CRP is helping to ensure the Indigenous Circle of Expert (ICE) recommendations are considered and acted upon through the Parks Canada Research Agenda in the spirit of reconciliation.

The Question

 

What are emerging, or horizon, issues(1) that are currently not emphasized or being addressed, but are expected to have considerable impacts on ecosystems and ecosystem services(2) delivered through protected area and area-based conservation organizations(3) in Canada, over the next 5 to 10 years?

 

Please consider the following when formulating your input:

Emerging issues do not need to be program related but should have the potential to impact ecosystems and ecosystem services of protected areas in Canada.

For the purpose of this exercise, research questions should meet the following criteria to be added to the lists:
 
  1. be relevant to protected areas and area-based conservation units in Canada;
  2. address an important existing or developing gap in knowledge base and/or program areas;
  3. focus on ecosystems and ecosystem services;
  4. be formulated as a research question (rather than as a general topic or priority area);
  5. be answerable through a feasible scientific research design;
  6. be of a spatial and temporal scope that could be addressed by a research team (internal or collaborations with partners).

All issues have been compiled. They are available here.

The protected areas community is now invited to rank these issues. As there were over 150 issues identified, please download the following excel worksheet and follow the instructions, then submit your ranking to pc.labosciences-sciencelab.pc@canada.ca by December 22, 2020.

Deadline December 22, 2020

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Horizon scanning is a technique for detecting early signs of potentially important developments through a systematic examination of potential threats and opportunities.
  • It is not about predicting the future but is a way of investigating evidence of future trends.
  • Emerging issues are new issues being identified and not yet being addressed.
  • Horizon issues are issues that could potentially have a significant impact on ecosystems and species in the next 5 to 10 years.
  • For this project, the identified issues are expected to impact ecosystems and the services they provide, such as clean air and water.
  • Emerging issues do not need to be program related but should have the potential to impact ecosystem functions and services of protected areas in Canada.
  • For the purpose of this exercise, it should be possible to address issues via research questions.
  • Research questions should: (i) be relevant to protected areas and area-based conservation units in Canada; (ii) address an important existing or developing gap in knowledge base and/or program areas; (iii) focus on ecosystems and ecosystem services; (iv) be formulated as a research question (rather than general topic or priority area); (v) be answerable through a feasible scientific research design; (vi) be of a spatial and temporal scope that could be addressed by a research team.
  • The entire protected areas portfolio is included in this exercise, including federal, provincial, and territorial parks and protected areas, Other Effective Area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs), managed by private, public, Indigenous or any other entity.
  • Parks Canada wants to identify emerging/horizon issues that could impact ecosystem conservation and management in Canada’s protected and conserved areas in the next 5 – 10 years.
  • In support of Canada’s commitment to protect 25% of its terrestrial lands and marine waters, the proposed scope encompasses all types of protected and conserved areas, rather than being limited to Parks Canada’s sites.
  • Accordingly, the proposed scope includes establishment, conservation for ecological integrity or ecologically sustainable use, as well as the provision of ecosystem services.
  • The horizon scan will represent an important source of input to Parks Canada’s research agenda.
  • Input is being requested from scientists, (ecologists, sociologists, biologists, geoscientists) natural resource managers, conservationists, land managers, students and professors.
  • Expert advice provided by individuals active in protected areas conservation and management will guide and validate the issues that are identified and included.
  • Participants who provide input will also be invited to rank the identified issues in the second phase of the process.
  • A report that will include all identified issues will be created and made available to protected area managers across the country.
  • A manuscript will be submitted by the expert group and will be made available on the Research Network webpage.
  • Results will be used by Parks Canada to inform its research agenda.

Questions or comments?
Please contact: pc.labosciences-sciencelab.pc@canada.ca

Support for the Horizon Scan was provided by Parks Canada.

Grow the Research Network

Help us grow the Parks Research Network by creating a profile for you in the PanCanadian Parks and Protected Areas Research Network. You may provide information informally or in bullet-form, and where possible we encourage you to provide links to existing content that will help create an understanding of your work. Student Assistants will compile your responses into a profile and will share a preview prior to posting.