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Postgraduate Courses 2017/18

Conservation Project Management - MSc

Canterbury

Overview

The management of species, habitats and ecosystems is increasingly drawing upon principles and practices from other disciplines, such as business, marketing and human resources.

The MSc in Conservation Project Management draws upon the extensive conservation project management experience of Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and equips you with the skills and tools you need to manage conservation projects effectively. The pathway is particularly suitable for managers of conservation projects who wish to build on their existing skills, or conservation practitioners who wish to move into a project management role. You spend time at the International Training Centre at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust in Jersey.

Why study with us?

  • One-year taught Master's programme
  • Teaching which integrates natural and social sciences
  • Lecturers are research active, world-leading academics with practical experience of conservation project management in locations across the world
  • Tailored courses in leadership and facilitation skills delivered by staff experienced in project managment within conservation
  • Teaching with integrates natural and social sciences
  • Formal lectures and seminars supported by residential courses and day trips including to the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, Jersey, previous fieldtrips have also taken place in Scotland and Malta (these change annually)

About The Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE)

Conservation programmes offered by the School of Anthropology and Conservation are delivered by members of DICE.

DICE is Britain’s leading research centre dedicated to conserving biodiversity and the ecological processes that support ecosystems and people. It pursues innovative and cutting-edge research to develop the knowledge that underpins conservation, and sets itself apart from more traditionally-minded academic institutions with its clear aims to:

  • Break down the barriers between the natural and social sciences in conservation
  • Conduct research that informs and improves policy and practice in all relevant sectors
  • Disseminate knowledge and provide expertise on conservation issues to stakeholders
  • Build capacity in the conservation sector through research-led teaching and training
  • Strive for sustainable livelihoods and biodiversity conservation that benefits people

Our staff have outstanding international research profiles, yet integrate this with considerable on-the-ground experience working with conservation agencies around the world. This combination of expertise ensures that our programmes deliver the skills and knowledge that are essential components of conservation implementation.

National ratings

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, research by the School of Anthropology and Conservation was ranked 10th for research power and in the top 20 in the UK for research impact and research power.

An impressive 94% of our research was judged to be of international quality and the School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research.

Course structure

The MSc consists of six months of coursework and five months of research. The optional modules allow you the flexibility to devise a pathway that suits your specific interests, with an appropriate balance between natural and social sciences.

Modules

Please note that not all modules necessarily run every year. Please contact the School for more detailed information on availability.

DI876 - Research Methods for Social Science (15 credits)

The module will begin with a broad overview of social science approaches to research, highlighting contrasts with standard natural science techniques and focusing on the qualitative-quantitative divide. Subsequent sessions will introduce individual methods such as participant observation, qualitative interviewing, questionnaire surveys and focus groups. Sessions will also be devoted to processing and analysis of qualitative data, but not with statistical analysis of quantitative data, since this will be covered elsewhere in the programmes. Towards the end of the module, we will examine the principles of integrated research design and mixed-methods approaches.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI836 - Integrated Species Conservation and Management (15 credits)

Tackling conservation problems at the species level of organisation is both attractive and popular. In order to achieve this, it is important to understand how ‘species’ are defined and how they have evolved and gone extinct over evolutionary time scales. Certain species may be used to provide political or financial leverage in conservation programmes, while others may play fundamental roles in ecological systems – students will evaluate the different criteria used to assign species into these categories. This will lead into an appraisal of the role of conservation genetics in conservation planning, and how genetic and population parameters can be used to build predictive models of extinction risk. Islands provide special challenges for practitioners of species conservation – these will be discussed and illustrated with the aid of case studies. Assigning priorities in species conservation is essential to the planning process when resources are in short supply, and various quantitative and qualitative methods of achieving this will be presented, including the IUCN Red List system. The role of organisations such as NGOs and zoos will be discussed and evaluated, and current protocols for captive breeding, health monitoring, translocation and reintroduction presented. The module will draw together the various approaches to species conservation by appraising the structure, function and implementation of species recovery programmes.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI841 - Managing Protected Areas (15 credits)

Protected areas have a long history. From time immemorial, human communities have conferred special status on sacred sites, set certain areas of land aside as hunting preserves, or reached agreements on the management regime for communal lands. This module aims to review the practice of setting land aside for such activities and managing protected areas. The following topics will form the basis of lectures, seminars and field trip around which the module will be taught: The concept of a protected area; The significance of size in protected area design; International designations of protected areas; Sustainable use of protected areas; Planning and management; Common threats to protected areas; Governance; Sustainable development and protected areas; Economics of protected areas; Management effectiveness evaluation.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI849 - Principles of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing (15 credits)

The overall aim of this module is to provide an applied introduction to the use of GIS and remote sensing in biodiversity conservation and management and more broadly in environmental sciences. This module will provide an introduction to the theory and practice of GIS and remote sensing as well as an introduction to a range of methods for collection, management and interpretation of spatial data. Particular attention is paid to the development of students' analysis skills of to deal with spatial data using GIS.

GIS are increasingly being used in biodiversity conservation and environmental sciences in general to help solve a wide range of "real world" environmental and associated social problems. As the current trend in ecological and environmental studies moves towards the acquisition manipulation and analysis of large datasets with explicit geographic reference, employers often report shortages of relevant GIS skills to handle spatial data. Thus, this module will introduce the use of GIS as a means of solving spatial problems and the potential of GIS and remote sensing techniques for biodiversity and environmental studies providing the student with marketable skills relevant to research and commercial needs.

Indicative topics:

• Principles of cartography, coordinate systems and projections

• Introduction to the fundamental principles of GIS;

• Introduction to remote sensing

• Data sources and methods of data acquisition

• Types of spatial data, working with raster and vector data

• Mapping (how to create and transform maps),

• Elementary database management

• ArcGIS -overview of ArcGIS, ArcMap, ArcCatalog; ArcToolbox, Spatial Analyst.

• GIS operations (Calculating area, Intersection of polygons etc)

• manipulation, spatial data query and analysis of a wide range of environmental and socio-economic information relevant to biodiversity conservation and environmental sciences

• Spatial analysis in GIS

• Introduction to the application of GIS in systematic conservation planning.



These topics will be taught using a combination of lectures and practicals. The practical classes will provide hands-on experience using ArcGIS which is the most widely used GIS system. Students will be able to use knowledge and skills acquired in this module in practical project work

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI871 - International Wildlife Trade - Achieving Sustainability (15 credits)

Wildlife trade and use contributes on the one hand to peoples' livelihoods but on the other may threaten species. Management of such trade relies on a number of multilateral agreements including CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Such management requires an appropriate policy, legislative, management and scientific framework for its successful implementation at national and international levels. Details of each these aspects will be examined and students will have the opportunity to examine a number of multilateral organisations as well as legal aspects of eco-labelling and Intellectual property rights. This module will guide students through the steps of implementing a legal framework, from the adoption of national wildlife trade policies, prioritization of species for management intervention, making sustainability findings and providing incentives for conservation through to the multilateral governance structures. The module will be delivered through combined methods, of lecture, discussion, and practical exercises which will contribute to achievement of the module specific learning outcomes as well as developing key skills. Particular topics will include:

• Prioritization & management of species endangered by trade and overuse

• Making sustainability findings (non-detriment) and trade monitoring

• Multilateral environment agreements and trade and environment.

• Ecolabels and intellectual property rights

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI877 - Population and Evolutionary Biology (15 credits)

This module provides an introduction to evolutionary and population biology, starting with the main evolutionary processes that influence populations and how they evolve, and leading into the established demographic theory that underpins population biology. Associated topics also covered will include evolutionary phylogenetics, comparative analysis and meta-population dynamics. Following this, population genetic mechanisms are considered, such as natural selection, genetic drift and inbreeding, and how they interact to influence populations of threatened species. A practical component of the module focuses on molecular genetic techniques, and how to interpret such genetic data.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI883 - Special Topics in Conservation (15 credits)

This module provides the opportunity for students to undertake a detailed analysis or review of a specific topic of interest that relates directly to their programme of study. The topic will be decided upon after consultation with the relevant member of staff and agreed by the Programme Convenor and Director of Graduate Studies. The topic of interest may be explored using one or more of the following approaches: comprehensive literature review, systematic evidence review, collection and analysis of a small field data set, analysis of an existing data set, laboratory practical exercise, computer modelling. The topic of interest must be addressed by framing it within a clearly defined goal, and the approach used must allow a clear conclusion to be reached.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI885 - Ecotourism and Rural Development Field Course (15 credits)

The module will is based on a 5 day field trip and is designed to complement other modules by offering the students an opportunity to learn first-hand from local businesses and government agencies about practical aspects of rural development and biodiversity conservation. Using questionnaires and structured interviews the students will work in teams and will equip students with the analytical skills and methodologies required to effectively manage conservation projects in a manner sympatheic to livelihoods and rural development objectives The module will include daily field trips to local sites to understand environmental impacts of visitors to natural areas and heritage sites and to discuss emerging business thinking regarding conservation and livelihoods, exploring relationships between different stakeholders from cultural, policy and socio-economic perspectives and gain practical insight into different management tools to resolve conflicts. The module will therefore provide practical learning to complement theoretical issues taught in other modules. Students will become familiar with practical tools for successful management of conservation embedded in local communities, and will analyse the strengths and weaknesses of conservation in a rural development context. The emphasis throughout will be on learning from the experience of people and organisations directly engaged in conservation and economic development.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI888 - Economics of Biodiversity Conservation (15 credits)

Effective biodiversity conservation relies on an understanding of how markets work and also how they fail. In this module students will be introduced to key economic theories and concepts such as the laws of demand & supply, market competition and economic efficiency, and the market failure paradigm (property rights, public goods, transaction costs and externalities). We will explore the economic causes of biodiversity conflict and loss such as habitat loss and wildlife trade, and using case studies, we will learn how to identify possible solutions using analytical approaches and techniques such as cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis and multi-criteria analysis.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI998 - Dissertation - Conservation (60 credits)

The dissertation project represents a piece of independent research carried out by the student which is written up as in two reports: a review of relevant literature and a research paper. Before undertaking the research, students are trained in research design and planning, statistical analysis and writing skills. A project supervisor is allocated to each student and students are expected to produce a research plan and budget for their proposed programme of research in conjunction with the supervisor. The programme of research may consist of a literature review, analysis of existing data sets, analysis of newly-collected field or laboratory data, or a combination of these approaches. Students are provided with training in the writing-up of the dissertation which should be submitted in mid-September. The topic of the dissertation must be directly relevant to the programme of study.

Credits: 60 credits (30 ECTS credits).

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Teaching and Assessment

Assessment is carried out primarily through coursework with written examinations for some modules. The research dissertation is written up in the format of a paper for publication.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

  • produce postgraduates equipped to play leading roles in the field of international conservation and biodiversity management
  • develop new areas of teaching in response to the advance of scholarship and practice
  • provide you with opportunities to gain a interdisciplinary perspective on conservation issues through collaborative exchange between DICE and the wider University
  • develop your competence in applying theoretical and methodological skills to the implementation of conservation practice and biodiversity management
  • develop your critical and analytical powers in relation to policy formulation and data analysis and interpretation
  • provide you with the skills to adapt and respond positively to change
  • develop critical, analytical problem-based learning skills and the transferable skills necessary for professional development
  • enhance the development of your interpersonal skills
  • assist you to develop the skills required for both autonomous practice and team-working.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • fundamental ecological concepts and how they apply to conservation biology and biodiversity management
  • conservation at the species, population, community and ecosystem levels
  • fundamental social science perspectives on conservation, and the principles of interdisciplinarity
  • principles and significance of resource economics
  • biodiversity law, policy and legislative frameworks
  • principles and practice involved with sustainable resource use
  • principles and practice involved with managing protected areas for conservation
  • principles of conservation research design, implementation and analysis, including problem-led interdisciplinary approaches
  • principles and practice in conservation, business and rural development.

Intellectual skills

You develop intellectual skills in:

  • the ability to marshal ideas and examples into well-organised written and oral presentations
  • critical analysis of case studies
  • reflective evaluation of theoretical and methodological frameworks
  • design, implementation, analysis and write-up of a substantial research project (your Master’s dissertation)
  • linking theory to practice in conservation science and social science.

Subject-specific skills

You gain subject-specific skills in:

  • field biology skills
  • social science methodologies
  • experimental design and statistics
  • methodologies for analysing and appraising conservation case studies
  • population assessment and assessment of threat status
  • methodologies for estimating sustainable wildlife management
  • methodologies for protected areas management and planning.

Transferable skills

You will gain the following transferable skills:

  • IT: Word, Excel, statistical and modelling programmes, email, bibliographic and web searches
  • presentation skills
  • writing reports and funding proposals
  • time management
  • using a library
  • working in groups
  • the skills to exercise initiative and personal responsibility
  • independent learning skills required for continuing professional development.

Careers

The School has a very good record for postgraduate employment and academic continuation. DICE programmes combine academic theory with practical field experience to develop graduates who are highly employable within government, NGOs and the private sector.

Our alumni progress into a wide range of organisations across the world. Examples include: consultancy for a Darwin Initiative project in West Sumatra; Wildlife Management Officer in Kenya; Chief of the Biodiversity Unit – UN Environment Programme; Research and Analysis Programme Leader for TRAFFIC; Freshwater Programme Officer, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN); Head of the Ecosystem Assessment Programme, United Nations Environment Programme-World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC); Community Based Natural Resource Manager, WWF; Managing Partner, Althelia Climate Fund; and Programme Officer, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

Study support

Postgraduate resources

The School has a lively postgraduate community drawn together not only by shared resources such as postgraduate rooms, computer facilities (with a dedicated IT officer) and laboratories, but also by student-led events, societies, staff/postgraduate seminars, weekly research student seminars and a number of special lectures.

The School houses well-equipped research laboratories for genetics, ecology, visual anthropology, virtual paleoanthropology, Animal Postcranial Evolution, biological anthropology, anthropological computing, botany, osteology and ethnobiology. In addition to various long-term study sites around the world we maintain an ecology field trials area and a field laboratory on the University campus.

The DICE postgraduate student body is global. Since 1991, there have been over 500 taught MSc graduates from 75 countries, most of whom now have successful full-time conservation careers. The PhD research degree programme has produced over 90 graduates from 27 different countries. Several graduates have gone on to win prestigious international prizes for their outstanding conservation achievements.

Global Skills Award

All students registered for a taught Master's programme are eligible to apply for a place on our Global Skills Award Programme. The programme is designed to broaden your understanding of global issues and current affairs as well as to develop personal skills which will enhance your employability.  

Entry requirements

A good second class honours degree, or better, in a relevant subject; a good honours degree in other subjects together with relevant practical experience.

In exceptional circumstances, DICE admits applicants without a first degree if their professional career and experience shows academic achievement of a high enough standard.

General entry requirements

Please also see our general entry requirements

International students

Please see our entry requirements by country.

English language entry requirements

For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages. 

Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.

Research areas

Dynamic publishing culture

Staff publish regularly and widely in peer-reviewed journals, conference proceedings and books. Articles have recently been published in prestigious periodicals including: Nature; Science; Biological Conservation; Conservation BiologyConservation Letters; Journal of Applied Ecology; Proceedings of the National Academy of SciencesEcological Economics and Human Ecology.

Worldwide research

Recent or current projects cover topics such as:

  • Ecology of flagship Amazonian species – red Uakari monkeys and giant river otters
  • Monitoring population trends in tigers and their prey in Kirinci Seblat National Park, Sumatra
  • Chameleon trade and conservation in Madagascar
  • Global biodiversity hotspots and extinction risk
  • Conservation genetics of the critically endangered Seychelles paradise flycatcher
  • Traditional knowledge, intellectual property rights and protected area management
  • Collaborative wildlife management and changing social contexts in Amazonian Peru
  • The economic value of mammals in Britain
  • Estimating extinction dates of plants, birds and mammals
  • Habitat loss and fragmentation at different scales across Europe
  • Mapping the Falklands: facilitating systematic conservation planning and implementation.

Staff research interests

Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.

Dr Peter Bennett: Reader in Biodiversity and Evolutionary Ecology

Evolution, ecology and conservation of birds; biodiversity hotspots; life history evolution and extinction risk; marine mammals; wildlife disease.

Profile

Dr Richard Bodmer: Reader in Conservation Ecology

Population dynamics and community ecology of rainforest mammals; community-based conservation, sustainable use, wildlife management in tropical ecosystems.

Profile

Dr Ian Bride: Senior Lecturer in Biodiversity Management

Conservation education; biodiversity management; PA and visitor management; nature tourism; guiding and interpretation; community-based conservation; and restoration ecology.

Profile

Dr Zoe Davies: Senior Lecturer in Biodiversity Conservation

Conservation planning and practice; conservation financial and investment; urban ecology and human-wildlife interactions; biodiversity and ecosystem service relationships; species and assemblage responses to environmental change (eg, climate and habitat loss/fragmentation).

Profile

Professor Richard Griffiths: Professor of Biological Conservation

Ecology and conservation of amphibians and reptiles; effects of environmental change on threatened species; survey and monitoring protocols for biodiversity.

Profile

Dr Jim Groombridge: Reader in Biodiversity Conservation

Conservation of highly threatened bird species; conservation genetics of small populations; parrot conservation, genetics and biogeography.

Profile

Dr Tatyana Humle: Lecturer in Primate Conservation

Primate conservation and behavioural ecology; ethnoprimatology; cultural primatology; primate rehabilitation and reintroduction; human wildlife conflict and resource competition.

Profile

Professor Douglas MacMillan: Professor of Conservation and Applied Resource Economics

Economics and wildlife conservation; environmental modelling; economics of collaboration in land and wildlife management; forest resource economics.

Profile

Dr David Roberts: Senior Lecturer in Biodiversity Conservation

Species detectability and extinction; international wildlife trade; perception of biodiversity; the response of orchids to climate change; epiphyte community ecology and modelling epiphyte seed dispersal.

Profile

Dr Bob Smith: Senior Research Fellow

Designing conservation landscapes and protected area networks, especially as part of long-term projects in southeast Africa and the English Channel.

Profile

Dr Freya St John: Research Associate

Interface between biodiversity conservation and human populations who use natural resources.

Profile

Dr Matthew Struebig: Lecturer in Biological Conservation

Ecology and management of tropical mammals; species response to climate change; biodiversity impacts of land-use change, disturbance and fragmentation; conservation value of degraded lands; oil palm and biodiversity.

Profile

Dr Joseph Tzanopoulos: Senior Lecturer in Biodiversity Conservation

Biodiversity conservation using a landscape approach to assess impacts of policy scenarios; reconciling biodiversity conservation and sustainable development on rural areas; landscape ecology and GIS; conservation policy and governance; agro-ecology and agricultural landscapes.

Profile

Enquire or order a prospectus

Resources

Contacts

Admissions enquiries

T: +44 (0)1227 827272

E:information@kent.ac.uk

Subject enquiries

Katie Watson, Recruitment and Admissions Co-ordinator

T: +44 (0)1227 827013

E: sacadmissions@kent.ac.uk

 

School website

Fees

The 2017/18 annual tuition fees for this programme are:

Conservation Project Management - MSc at Canterbury:
UK/EU Overseas
Full-time £12190 £17210
Part-time £6120 £8610

For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact information@kent.ac.uk

The University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that the information contained in its publicity materials is fair and accurate and to provide educational services as described. However, the courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Full details of our terms and conditions can be found at: www.kent.ac.uk/termsandconditions.

*Where fees are regulated (such as by the Department of Business Innovation and Skills or Research Council UK) they will be increased up to the allowable level.

Publishing Office - © University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000

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