Assessment of Stakeholders Engagement in Biodiversity Conservation Project: In the case of MELCA Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


Active engagement of stakeholders from the beginning and throughout the decision-making is an essential element of any successful community-based biodiversity conservation. The objective of this study was to assess the key stakeholders engaged in projects implemented by MELCA Ethiopia, assess the engagement practices being implemented by the organization as well as figure out the role of the key stakeholders in the community-based biodiversity conservation projects. A mixed research approach was used in which, data collected quantitatively through questionnaire from 28 from project personnel, community and others as well as qualitative data through semi-structured interview from four key personnel were organized and analyzed. The finding showed that the organization has at least 11 stakeholders which can considered as potential key stakeholders influencing decision making and project success ranging from local community to government authority. The organization uses snowballing (through peers) and from lessons learned from past projects, with a frequency of (28, 100%) and (24, 84.7%), for stakeholder identification. Furthermore, vision and mission based (24, 85.7%) followed by proximity to conservation area (18, 64.3%) were the bases for stakeholder identification. On the other hand, MELCA Ethiopia undertakes stakeholder’s engagement throughout the project life cycle beginning from project initiation to completion. Key informants also raised conducting need assessment and prioritizing stakeholders’ needs as an important idea for project identification. Indeed, this study recommends that, all stakeholders need to be provided a training on stakeholder engagement where they can develop an understanding on the usefulness of partnership (working together). As well, the organization should devise a mechanism to track progress through proper monitoring on the engagement process and make corrective actions easily.



Biodiversity conservation, Key stakeholders, MELCA Ethiopia, snowballing, stakeholder engagement