An invasive species system assessment in Zambia
Published: March, 2022
The study seeks to understand the current status of the invasive species system in Zambia, including its responsiveness. A methodology was developed for identifying areas where the system can be strengthened, as well as establishing a baseline against which changes in system responsiveness can be assessed at a later date, if required.
Through a revised methodology including a document review and key informant interviews the system’s current strengths and weaknesses were identified. This facilitated the process of clearly defining and understanding the invasive species system in Zambia as it currently stands and the development of clear guidance on ways forward.
The study findings demonstrate that the current invasive species system in Zambia has some strengths, including a broad range of actors who are aware of the need for invasive species management, some collaboration among actors who demonstrate a willingness to work together, and recognition of the value of community involvement in the control and management of invasive species. However, challenges to the system remain, including weak coordination/communication, a fragmented sector-based approach, institutional/legislative gaps, monitoring and evaluation limitations, and a severe lack of training and resources.
Previous work on invasive alien species (IAS) in Zambia has ensured there is a clear mandate and an established framework for IAS management in the country, with the process of formally establishing a coordination mechanism at an advanced stage. To strengthen the invasive species system in Zambia, a next step should be ensuring the apex body and coordination mechanism is formalized, with government support, in order to provide an enabling environment for action on invasive species in the country.