A competency-based approach to professionalize PA management in Madagascar

Published: 13 November 2015
Last edited: 14 January 2019
remove_red_eye 1853 Views


REPC-MD developed the first competence register for protected area (PA) management in Madagascar. It covers the critical knowledge areas, skill sets, and attitudes required by effective PA professionals, and profiles the roles and responsibilities associated with effective PA management. We are supporting opportunities for training and certification of PA professionals aligned with this register, to advance the professionalization of national PA management.


East and South Africa
Scale of implementation
Coral reef
Forest ecosystems
Freshwater ecosystems
Marine and coastal ecosystems
River, stream
Temperate evergreen forest
Wetland (swamp, marsh, peatland)
Terrestrial spatial planning
Other theme
Capacity development




improve standards for conservation professionals


Government actors and NGOs managing PAs in Madagascar, PA professionals and Community Based Organizations managing PAs

How do the building blocks interact?

We integrated a partnership and participatory approach with a competency-based approach to catalyze strategic long-term thought and action for improving PA management in Madagascar. We recommend following 5 steps: 1: Demonstrate the importance of long-term capacity building to ensure the sustainability of protected areas via workshops to help better understand its issues and challenges (BB#3). 2: Mobilize local expertise to create key tools: Standard and Skills Certification System. The creation of an ad hoc committee composed of the Ministry staff, representatives of conservation NGOs, universities or vocational training center facilitates collaboration and reflection, and creates local ownership (BB#2) 3: The members of the ad-hoc committee are the ambassadors of the approach to their institutions, to facilitate consultations. They help disseminate the approach within their own organization first and later on, in larger scales (BB#1) 4: Go through the existing spaces for dialogue to validate the process and tools (BB#1) 5: Disseminate tools and product resources through our network of collaborators and partners (BB#1).


Our work on developing competence standards for conservation professionals set an important precedent and foundation in Madagascar. The Standards serve as a tool for performance assessment, designing training curricula and career development pathways, and for recruitment in the field of PA management. The impact has been a paradigm shift based on three major principles:


  1. training and competences should be clearly linked to professional efficacy and performance;
  2. capacity development is a long process that continues during the professional career;
  3. capacity development is needed at individual, organizational, and system levels.

Our participatory approach involved the Ministry of Environment and 150 individuals from almost 30 institutions, and included designing and piloting training programs to meet the Standards. Importantly, the Ministry plans to use them for management accreditation in future. REPC-MD has catalyzed strategic long-term thought and action for PA management in Madagascar, mainstreaming the importance of capacity development, and fostered a leadership role for the country in regional conservation capacity building work.


Please contact solution provider

Contributed by

Domoina Rakotobe Réseau des Educateurs et Professionnels de la Conservation à Madagascar (REPC-MD)

Other contributors

Réseau des Educateurs et Professionnels de la Conservation à Madagascar (REPC-MD)
Network of Conservation Educators and Practitioners; American Museum of Natural History, Center for