Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/222615
Title: EVOLUTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL VOLUNTEERING FOR THE CONSERVATION OF THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT OF SINGAPORE
Authors: WONG HIU FUNG
Keywords: MEM
Environmental Management
Master (Environmental Management)
N. Sivasothi
2017/2018 EnvM
Study Report (MEM)
Issue Date: 8-Mar-2019
Citation: WONG HIU FUNG (2019-03-08). EVOLUTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL VOLUNTEERING FOR THE CONSERVATION OF THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT OF SINGAPORE. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The recent progress of marine conservation in Singapore can be marked by three milestones – the deferment of reclaiming Chek Jawa in 2001, the development of Singapore Blue Plan 2009 and the establishment of Sisters’ Islands Marine Park in 2014. This has stimulated an increasing number of marine environmental volunteering programmes and a growing pool of volunteers from the public contributing to conservation in diverse areas of focus. In face of expected continual maritime and coastal developments in Singapore, strategies to strengthen these volunteer conservation efforts could be initiated by sharing complementary data and coordination across programmes to cater for long-term sustainability of the diverse stakeholders’ interests in the field of marine conservation. In order to do so, this study compared the nature and characteristics of the existing marine environmental volunteering programmes in Singapore to explore the steps which may be taken for joint efforts and coordination across programmes. Particular attention was given to the data collected by each programme (especially their quality and complementary nature) as well as the social and institutional feasibility in coordination. There is potential for collaboration across programmes in terms of sharing complementary data on species richness and pollution at various marine habitats and sites to strengthen advocacy for conserving the local marine environment. Coordination across programmes was identified in areas involving young people in pursuit of fulfilling educational goals. Key opportunities to collaboration observed are 1) similar programme priority for education, 2) strong scientific desirability among programmes with credible complementary data that can offer a unique and holistic perspective for local marine conservation, 3) well-established network with NParks and education institutes as well as informal networks within the marine conservation community to facilitate coordination, 4) a diversity of talent available for innovative joint efforts, and 5) popularity of the use of online and social media among volunteers. Key barriers to collaboration observed are 1) a lack of specific measurement of goals for clarity in collaboration, 2) insufficient funding, 3) difficulty in planning coordination schedules due to limited volunteer availability and 4) limited leadership for coordination especially on scientific aspects. NParks is identified as a central point for coordination given their experience in formal collaborations with several programmes. The other major stakeholders are the education sector and young people. It is proposed that a secretariat for coordinating marine environmental volunteering programmes will best address the need for ensuring clarity in data sharing and other resourcing, managing skills diversity among volunteers, creating new volunteering opportunities, recruitment, fund-raising and events management. A place-based collaboration pilot is suggested for mangrove/mudflat habitats in Sungei Buloh/Mandai area, Pulau Ubin, Coney Island, East Coast Park or Changi Beach based on several existing complementary data available as well as the social and institutional networks already established.
URI: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/222615
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