Community-based monitoring is the ongoing collection, analysis, and use of resource management information at the community level, where many of the threats to biodiversity originate and resource-use decisions are made. The community decides on what to monitor and is responsible for the collection, analysis, and use of the information. The results of monitoring must be integrated into a community decision-making process that allows people to weigh evidence and propose actions.
Effective monitoring can help a community deal with threats to its future, come up with possible interventions to address the threats, analyze how well actions are working, and provide the insight to know how to modify behavior and management practices. Simple monitoring systems that can be easily managed by local people can raise community awareness and commitment to protecting local biodiversity.
1. From a community's perspective, people fear that monitoring will reveal problems that the community then has to deal with. From an NGO's perspective, reluctance to monitor often stems from the perception that funding is tied to success, and monitoring can indicate failure.