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What organizations and communities measure often determines what they pay attention to and says much about what they value. We believe that one of the greatest challenges currently faced by the conservation movement – and others seeking to create stronger relationships between healthy people, communities and lands – is the way we define, talk about and measure success. The challenge is that we become what we measure, and conservationists primarily measure dollars, acres, and biological diversity. Conservation’s real success is bigger than biological diversity, bigger than smart growth, bigger than wilderness designations. It’s even bigger than the 14 million acres conserved by conservationists in the last decade. Real success is conservation’s ability to re-define for Americans their health, their relationships, and their sense of fairness. Real success is achieved when conservationists work in partnership with other groups to engage more people in building just and vibrant communities. Real success is found in conservation’s contribution to restoring our common wealth – the natural, social, civic and economic assets held in common for the well-being of all community members.
Values-based planning and evaluation tool designed to measure the qualitative and quantitative impacts of community-based food projects - developed by the Center for Whole Communities in collaboration with the Community Food Security Coalition. From the guide: "Whole Measures for Community Food Systems is designed to give organizations and communities a collaborative process for defining and expressing their complex stories and the multiple outcomes that emerge from their work."
Whole Measures for Urban Conservation (WMUC), based on the Center for Whole Communities’ Whole Measures, was produced in partnership with The Nature Conservancy as part of the launch of the North America Cities Network. Led by Center for Whole Communities, a team of Conservancy staff from the Cities Network developed the rubric and provided key input for the guidance portion of the document. WMUC includes four primary areas of measurement and is a reference point for leaders interested in prioritizing benefits to low-income communities and advancing justice and equity in their work. While this document serves as a primary appendix to the Field Guide to Conservation in Cities, it is designed as a stand-alone document that may be used and reproduced independently.