• Protecting Water and Farmland in Simcoe County

Strengthening Stewardship Network in the Lake Simcoe Watershed

In Agriculture
Jul 4th, 2018

AWARE News Network

The Sustainability Network has released the result of an eight-month social network analysis of the most active agricultural and environmental organizations involved in Lake Simcoe basin stewardship. A final report and a recording of a 50 minute webinar that took place in late May are featured on a new website.

The Strengthening Stewardship Networks In The Lake Simcoe Watershed project focuses on understanding and assessing relationships among these organizations and on finding opportunities to strengthen connections for greater collaboration. The project is grounded in Social Network Analysis (SNA), which applies innovative data visualization tools to map how organizations connect and interact with one another, and to identify opportunities to share information and experiences and to improve coordination and collaboration.

The project was designed to inform the upcoming 10-year public review of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan, scheduled for 2019. The review will explore the effectiveness of existing policies in reaching the various objectives under the Plan, including how well environmental stewardship policies and actions have achieved various goals. The long-term success of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan rests on a strong foundation of environmental stewardship within the farm and non-farm communities.

A total of 41 organizations – commodity organizations, agricultural businesses, farmers, and environmental and conservation organizations – took part in an initial survey, with many participating in subsequent efforts, includingthe webinar and a workshop.

Identified as priorities were farm sustainability, water quality, soil health, fish and wildlife habitat and pollinator health.

“We hope to be back in touch soon to follow-up on the collaboration opportunities surfaced during this research,” Paul Bubelis of the Sustainability Network said in an email to participants.

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