The Okavango Delta in Botswana is one of the world's most valuable wetland resources. The diverse and complex nature of the Okavango Delta in terms of its natural resources, the wide range of users and uses, the diversity of managers, and the array of national laws, policies and guidelines, regional and international conventions, and agreements and protocols are all factors that dictate the need and determine the context for an integrated management planning process for the Delta. Development of an integrated management plan for the Okavango Delta began in 2002 and was completed in 2007. The approach to the planning process was based on the main principle of strengthening ownership through accountability and active participation of all stakeholders during both development and implementation of the plan, with local communities being considered as particularly important role players in the planning process. The process of developing a management plan was divided into three phases: planning, implementation, and review. This paper describes the planning phase, which ended in 2007. The challenge remains to ensure that implementation and review of the plan occurs.
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Vol. 28 • No. 2