IUCN recognises that sustainable use is a complex process. It is a moving target, affected by a multitude of factors that interact and change over time. The IUCN Policy Statement on Sustainable Use reflects this view and outlines the broad approach that IUCN has adopted. Yet the challenge of applying this approach to concrete situations remains. How do we take complexity seriously in working towards sustainability? What tools can we use to analyse our use practices and orient our activities along increasingly sustainable trajectories? How do we ask the right questions so that we can make better decisions?

This analytic framework, developed between 2000 and 2003 by the SUSG, is offered as an early contribution to the broad set of analytic and management tools that will need to be assembled by IUCN and others to assist societies to use biological systems sustainably. This tool was produced by a multidisciplinary team, and provides an overview of the different issues that must be considered in assessing use practices: Economic, ecological, socio-political, institutional, etc. The framework includes various modules or domains of analysis to aid understanding of the complexities of sustainability, and provides a systematic way to orient assessments of specific use practices.

This is a work in progress. Next steps include field testing and refinement of the framework. However, there is no desire to develop a single, all-purpose template, as that runs contrary to IUCN's approach to sustainable use. Rather, it is expected that a variety of frameworks and assessment tools might be developed in the context of specific use sectors and/or regions.

Download: Analytic Framework, PDF 213kb

Citation: Zaccagnini et.al. 2001. Analytic Framework for Assessing Factors that Influence Sustainability of Uses of Wild Living Natural Resources. IUCN.