Eastern and Southern Africa

Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Programme (BIOPAMA)

The Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Programme (BIOPAMA) aims to improve the long-term conservation and sustainable use of natural resources in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, in protected areas and surrounding communities.




The first phase of BIOPAMA ran from 2011-2017, with the second phase starting towards the end of 2017.  The overall objective of BIOPAMA (2017-2023) is:

To contribute to improving the long-term conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and natural resources in protected areas and surrounding communities through better use and monitoring of information and capacity development on management and governance

There are two implementing and coordinating organisations for the BIOPAMA project:

    • International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) – global protected areas and biodiversity conservation expertise
    • Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (JRC) – scientific and technical expertise

BIOPAMA is an initiative of the ACP Group of States financed by the European Union’s 11th European Development Fund (EDF).  We are very grateful to our donors and all partner organisations for their ongoing support and collaboration.

BIOPAMA aims at reinforcing the management and governance of protected and conserved areas in 24 countries in the Eastern and Southern African region. By providing unique and tailored support to protected area authorities at the local, national and regional level, it supports them in achieving their conservation objectives and in reporting more accurately their progress on relevant multilateral environmental agreements.

BIOPAMA delivers tools and services for better biodiversity conservation and protected area management and provides expertise in geospatial information systems and remote sensing.

BIOPAMA aims to complement and align with existing platforms and initiatives in the region, working closely with governments, IUCN members, Commissions, and other Technical Partners. 

Regional inception workshops held in Southern and Eastern Africa in early 2018 were the first key steps in the regional programme implementation and were used to identify government priorities in terms of protected area governance and equity and protected area management effectiveness.  The workshops also identified key technical partners who can assist in meeting government priorities.  For more information on BIOPAMA and for updates on the Eastern and Southern African BIOPAMA programme see www.biopama.org

The three main programme elements of BIOPAMA are:

Programme element


Regional Observatories and Information Systems

Support data collection, analysis, monitoring and reporting for evidence-based decision-making and develop the capacities of staff and organisations to make optimal use of this information to address specific needs.

Capacity building

Capacity building related to the effective use of the tools developed through BIOPAMA as well as in terms of governance, equity and management effectiveness to enable conservation practitioners, national agencies and protected areas managers to improve decision-making and prioritization of resource allocation.

Action Component

Support specific actions on the ground aimed at strengthening protected areas and natural resource management effectiveness and governance

Each Regional Reference Information System (RRIS) provides secure online access to biodiversity information and knowledge easily accessible and usable by all stakeholders interested in biodiversity, ecosystems, species, habitats, pressures, threats, management, governance, climate change vulnerability, etc.

The RRIS includes tools such as IMET (Integrated Management Effectiveness Tool) - an example of a protected areas management effectiveness assessment tool. RRIS tools are designed to harmonise easily with existing data and tools from other systems, for more powerful and informed decision-making.

For more information on BIOPAMA see www.biopama.org

BIOPAMA Government and intergovernmental regional inception workshop, Southern Africa Photo: BIOPAMA

BIOPAMA Technical partner regional inception workshop, Southern Africa Photo: BIOPAMA

BIOPAMA Governmental, intergovernmental and technical partner regional inception workshop, Eastern Africa Photo: BIOPAMA

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