> learning goals

Protected Areas are embedded in the societal context and are supposed to serve society. They have to be managed adaptively in a long-term perspective by multi-skilled individuals. The MSc programme "Management of Protected Areas" (MPA) shall provide the educational background and a comprehensive "toolbox" for these professionals.

The main learning goals of this MSc programme are:

  • an excellent and comprehensive understanding of the aims and roles of Protected Areas in relation to the conservation of biodiversity and (integrated) regional development.
  • in-depth knowledge on applying the full range of tools available for the management of Protected Areas, so that they can effectively fulfil these aims and foster sustainable regional development.
  • an ability to analyse and solve problems encountered when establishing, planning and managing Protected Areas, to conduct inter- and transdisciplinary dialogues with all stakeholders and to develop and implement appropriate integrated solutions.
  • the development of hard and soft skills to create mutual benefits for nature conservation on the one hand, and for the local population on the other hand, particularly in peripheral regions as well as in developing countries.

Special emphasis is laid on theoretic as well as practical work in elaborating on the role of protected areas for improving the well-being of all stakeholders, particularly the local population, for ensuring benefit-sharing between the local population and the conservation of biodiversity, and for developing the appropriate instruments and frameworks for empowering the local population in order to participate in decision-making processes.

This emphasis is particularly important for poor and developing regions not only in European countries, but also in developing countries in Asia and Africa. The programme is thus set up to present innovative approaches in biodiversity conservation and the use of traditional and tacit knowledge an instrument for sustainable regional development.