Protecting Heritage Places

10 steps to help protect the natural and cultural significance of places
Australian Heritage Commission, 2000

Step 6: What do you want to achieve? (continued)

Tips for writing your objectives

Defining objectives can be done with a group, which helps generate a common vision for the place. Whether you are working individually or as part of a group, you will need to get agreement on your objectives. This will ensure that all those involved with the place knows exactly what they are working towards.

Try following these tips when writing management objectives.

  • State how you would like to see the place in the future (what it will look like if you are successful).
  • Be clear and realistic. Don't be too ambitious. This is just your framework. It sets the direction. There is little point having objectives that you can't make happen.
  • It may help to start your objective with the word 'to..' followed by the action you want to happen (ie 'to conserve the woodland...') or how it will be in the future (ie 'a healthy and protected ecosystem for an endangered marsupial').
  • Make sure your objective is about retaining the heritage significance of the place.
  • Your objectives should also address the key management issues concerning the place.
  • You may need to refer to both compatible and incompatible uses. For example, compatible uses of a significant wetland may be birdwatching, but an incompatible use may be waterskiing.
  • Establish criteria that will tell you and others if you have achieved what you want. These are called indicators. They help you to monitor progress towards your objectives. They also help you to evaluate whether you have achieved your objectives.

More information on preparing and writing conservation policies for historic heritage can be found in The Conservation Plan by James Semple Kerr, available from the National Trust. For natural heritage guidance can be found in the Natural Heritage Places Handbook: Applying the Australian Natural Heritage Charter to conserve places of natural significance. See details of these publications in the Resources section.