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Academic & Professional Books  Conservation & Biodiversity  Conservation & Biodiversity: General

Pathways to Success Taking Conservation to Scale in Complex Systems

By: Nick Salafsky(Author), Richard Margoluis(Author), Aileen Lee(Foreword By), Anna Balla(Illustrator)
305 pages, 135 b/w illustrations
Publisher: Island Press
Pathways to Success
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  • Pathways to Success ISBN: 9781642831351 Paperback Feb 2022 Not in stock: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks
Price: £27.00
About this book Contents Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

As environmental problems grow larger and more pressing, conservationists have had to adapt. With a shrinking window of time to act, they are turning to broad approaches to combat continental- and global-scale crises of biodiversity loss, invasive species, and climate change. Pathways to Success – the long-awaited successor to the classic volume Measures of Success – is a modern guide to building large-scale transformative programs capable of tackling the complex conservation crises we face today.

In this strikingly illustrated volume, coauthors Nick Salafsky and Richard Margoluis walk readers through fundamental concepts of effective program-level design, helping them to think strategically about project coordination, funding, and stakeholder input. Chapters in the first part of the book look at all aspects of designing and implementing large-scale conservation programs while the second part focuses on how to use data and information to manage, adapt, and learn from program strategies. In addition, the authors offer practical advice for avoiding pitfalls, such as formulaic recipes and simplistic silver-bullet solutions that can trip up otherwise well-intentioned efforts. Abundant graphics help to explain and clarify concepts presented in the text, and a glossary in the back matter defines technical terms for the reader.

Pathways to Success is the definitive guide for conservation program managers and funders who want to increase the scale and effectiveness of their work combating biodiversity loss, climate change, and other pressing environmental issues.


Foreword / Aileen Lee
      Taking Conservation to Scale in Complex Systems
      About This Book

      Focus of This Book
      How This Book Is Organized
      Overarching Themes
      Sources and Further Information

PART I. Designing and Implementing Your Program
Chapter 1. Framing and Assessing the Situation
      Clarifying Your Purpose
      Understanding the System in Which You Are Working
      Developing a Shared Situation Model
      Situation Model and Situation Pathway Examples
      Sources and Further Information
Chapter 2. Planning Your Strategies
      Understanding Your Overall Impact Trajectory
      Finding Key Intervention Points in Situation Models
      Identifying Candidate Actions
      Creating Strategy Pathways to Show Theories of Change
      Developing Your Approach for Going to Scale
      Determining Your Program’s Investment Approach
      Sources and Further Information
Chapter 3. Operationalizing and Implementing Your Program
      Setting SMART Goals and Objectives
      Analyzing Trade-Offs and Conflict
      Turning Your Strategic Plan into an Actionable Work Plan
      Assembling a Programmatic Investment Portfolio
      Awarding Contracts and Grants That Enable Adaptation
      Sources and Further Information

PART II. Using and Expanding Your Evidence Base
Chapter 4. Synthesizing Existing Evidence
      Determining Investment in Evidence Based on Your Burden of Proof
      Identifying Critical Claims Requiring Evidence
      Compiling Evidence Sources and Assessing Claims
      Sources and Further Information

Chapter 5. Monitoring and Adapting
      Developing Your Monitoring Plan
      Monitoring Your Strategy Effectiveness
      Defining and Measuring Long-Term Program Success
      Analyzing Data and Using the Results to Adapt
      Reporting to Your Team and Stakeholders
      Exiting Responsibly
      Sources and Further Information
Chapter 6. Promoting Collaborative Learning
      Contributing to the Global Evidence Base
      Developing Collaborative Learning Programs
      Building the Discipline of Conservation
      Sources and Further Information
Some Final Words

Keys to Diagrams Used in This Book
About the Authors

Customer Reviews


Nick Salafsky is the Executive Director of Foundations of Success, the Product Manager of Miradi Adaptive Management Software, and one of the initial founders of the Conservation Measures Partnership. Over the past two decades, he has worked with hundreds of conservation projects and programs around the world on strategic planning, adaptive management, and cross-program learning.

Richard Margoluis is Chief Adaptive Management and Evaluation Officer at the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation where he and his team support grant-making in environmental conservation, basic science, patient care, and the San Francisco Bay Area. Before joining the Moore Foundation, Richard worked with Nick as co-director of Foundations of Success and was also one of the initial founders of the Conservation Measures Partnership.

By: Nick Salafsky(Author), Richard Margoluis(Author), Aileen Lee(Foreword By), Anna Balla(Illustrator)
305 pages, 135 b/w illustrations
Publisher: Island Press
Media reviews

"Given the urgent need for scalable solutions to address today's global challenges, Pathways to Success transforms good intent into good management practice. It is a fundamental read for all working to put people and planet first."
– Veronica Olazabal, Managing Director, The Rockefeller Foundation, and President, The American Evaluation Association

"Pathways to Success provides a systematic guide to achieve large-scale, environmental conservation. The authors champion flexible, adaptive strategies to tame complex systems. While stressing what they call 'aluminum' standard' analytic approaches, their book is the gold standard of guides to environmental transformation."
– Harvey V. Fineberg, President, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

"Large-scale conservation programs often require policy and societal changes, and the initial theory of change is rarely one hundred percent accurate. Thus, a program must constantly measure and adapt to fit emerging know ledge. This marvelous new book explores this approach and is a wonderful addition that will inform anyone struggling to make changes in large, complex systems."
– John Hennessy, James F. and Mary Lynn Gibbons Professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, and former President, Stanford University

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