What I Learn from Conservation Strategy Fund (CSF)

10 Aug 2015
Indah Rufiati

I attended a CSF training a few weeks ago and I want to share experience from it. CSF is an organization that advances with conservation solutions powered by economics. They are the expert on valuing protected areas or natural resources while sustaining both business and nature. CSF and Coral Triangle Center (CTC) as a collaboration partner to conduct this training in Indonesia and MacArthur Foundation mostly funded the training. The participants of the training mostly from NGOs: Program Tata Ruang dan Investasi Hijau (PROTARIH), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) Indonesia, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), CTC, Transformasi, Yayasan Masyarakat dan Perikanan Indonesia (MDPI), Kesatuan Nelayan Tradisional Indonesia (KNTI), Destructive Fishing Watch Indonesia, Conservation International (CI) and Rare Conservation. There were also participants from Universitas Indonesia (UI), Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB) and some departments from government.

The Objective of this training is to sustaining the natural or marine resources, using economic tools. The name of this training itself is “Economic Tools for Marine Conservation”. Before advancing this, we should strengthen our basic knowledge in economic fundamentals, microeconomics, natural resource economics (such as capital theory, public goods and resource harvest experiment), the cause or drivers of environmental degradation, fisheries economics, fisheries management & policy, environmental valuation, and cost-Benefit analysis.

The training consisted of lecture, discussion, case study and games. It is such an interesting way to learn.

Imagine that fish in the ocean are the same with fishes in a pool (of the world). Effort to catch the fishes increasing, people trying to get everything in the pool, at the end, it will be empty, unless…

There is a rule or agreement between fishers and other stakeholders who have interest in the pool to share and make quota to catch the fishes inside the pool. A simple agreement would be working easier in a smaller area, but harder in a bigger area or nation.

Some games in the training can show you easily that fishing with agreement or quotas or schedule to fish is more profitable or valuable in a long run for all users if they are committed to it.

The lecturers are experts with great experiences: Kim Bonine (Training Director of CSF), John Lynham (Associate Professor from University of Hawai’i), Hedley Grantham (Director of Spatial Analysis and Planning, Conservation International), Prof. Rodel Subade (University of the Philippines Visayas), and James Jolliffe (Overseas Development Institute Fellow, SOPAC).

While my favourite trainers are:

  1. Prof. David Johnson (Harvard University), he can made the boring economic lecture into an interesting and energetic one, economy is a game, economy is a basic of life, thinking of everyday life with economic tools is FUN!
  2. Rhona Barr (PhD at the London School of Economics and Political Science & CSF)

Smiling attitude from the Orlando Bloom-like in woman face, showed study case based on her experiences from all over the world. She gave many interesting experiences and implementation of economic tools in conservation areas.

In the future, I hope MDPI can share these economic tools to sustaining our marine resources and fisheries from at least one point of view (economic approach to sustainable fisheries).

“We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.” – Mother Teresa 

The participants of the training. Photo Credit: Don Nisnoni

One of the lecturer: Prof. David Johnson from Harvard University. Photo Credit: Don Nisnoni

Writer: Nandana Godjali

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