Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Breaking Views Team: Why not nominate yourself for a Conservation Board?

Nominations are open for positions on Conservation Boards. The Minister is calling for nominations for the 15 Boards across the country. You can nominate yourself. The Boards need good people on them especially as there are some very challenging issues facing conservation including a proposal put forward by Maori separatists to allow the customary harvesting of native species – including those that are endangered! You can read the details HERE.


Conservation Boards share in a vision to protect our flora and fauna. They represent the public interest in conservation within their region.

Conservation Board nominations are open

The Minister of Conservation is seeking nominations for membership of Conservation Boards in 2023.

This is your opportunity to get involved and contribute to the conservation efforts in Aotearoa New Zealand. You will have an interest in conservation issues and DOC's work, and are able to offer the perspective of your local community,

Visit what conservation boards do to understand more about what it means to be a conservation board member. 

How to apply

Any person or organisation can make a nomination using the online form. Nominations close 5 pm Tuesday 31 January 2023.

Apply to be a Conservation Board member.

If required, the form below can be completed and returned via email or post.

Download the nomination form (DOC, 137K)


Contact the Statutory Bodies Team if you would prefer a paper nomination form or have questions:

What conservation boards do

There are 15 conservation boards across Aotearoa, with up to 12 members each. Learn about the function of conservation boards and what it means to be a member.

Conservation boards are independent bodies that empower local communities and iwi to contribute to the management of conservation areas. Boards provide a voice for local concerns to gain traction in DOC’s work, and on a national level where required.

This is achieved through their statutory functions, determined primarily under the:

as well as through their relationship with the New Zealand Conservation Authority (NZCA) and Department of Conservation.

The boards are involved in the review and monitoring of these statutory plans for their regions:

  • conservation management strategies 
  • national park management plans, and 
  • conservation management plans.

Each of these statutory plans sets out how DOC and Treaty partners manage natural and historic heritage. The boards work with DOC to ensure the local communities are reflected in these plans.

Board members

Board members are appointed by the Minister of Conservation. Members are appointed as individuals for their experience, expertise, and links with the local community.

Anyone can be nominated, or nominate themselves, for a position on the board. The main criteria is an interest in conservation, and time and energy to take part. On any one board there may be students, teachers, farmers, fishers, scientists, builders, tourist operators, home makers, and people who are retired.

Members may have knowledge of nature conservation, natural earth and marine sciences, cultural heritage, recreation, tourism, the local community, and Māori perspectives.

Appointments commence on 1 July. Members serve a term of three years, although some members are appointed for a lesser term – often when replacing a resigning member. Members may be appointed for a second term.

Meetings and trips

The board will meet six times a year at various locations. A public forum session, where members of the public can talk to the board on conservation issues, is held during each meeting. These public conservation board meetings are an important mechanism for obtaining community input into conservation work and can contribute to a timely resolution of local issues. Field trips and workshops are sometimes integrated into these meetings, providing an opportunity to develop and acquire knowledge on local conservation issues.

Participation in the board is active. In addition to the meetings, trips, and workshops, members go to committee meetings, do research for reports and submissions, read briefing material before meetings, and liaise with the public. They work together to reach decisions by consensus.

Conservation boards and DOC benefit from the different perspectives that members offer, based on their personal and professional understanding.

All meeting agendas and minutes can be found on the individual Conservation board pages.

Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct for Conservation Board members provides a framework for conservation boards’ successful operation. It includes the roles of the boards, responsibilities of board members, and key legislative functions.

Code of Conduct for Conservation Board Members.


Conservation board members are paid for meetings and other approved activities. Members are paid a daily fee of $250, while the Chair fee is $330, based on an eight-hour commitment. The daily fee applies to all work, including that performed outside of meetings, that is required for the body to carry out its role.

Reasonable expenses for travel, accommodation, and meals approved in advance by the board will be reimbursed. 

Relationship with the NZCA

The conservation boards draw the attention of the New Zealand Conservation Authority (NZCA) to matters which they believe may warrant consideration at a national level. This relationship is based on information sharing, consultation, and personal contact.

The NZCA has a liaison member for each conservation board. This liaison attends meetings and provides a means by which boards can communicate issues for the NZCA to consider on a national level. The NZCA can then communicate issues of high importance to the Minister of Conservation.

More about the NZCA.

Relationship between conservation boards

Conservation boards liaise with their neighbouring boards. A culture of open information sharing is practiced, ensuring the best outcomes for conservation, with members often attending meetings of neighbouring boards.

Annual Chairs’ Conference 

The Annual Chairs’ Conference takes place once a year, generally in late August, and provides an opportunity for the Chairs of all the conservation boards to meet and discuss issues of importance. The Minister of Conservation, Director-General of DOC, and the Chairperson of the NZCA, are usually in attendance at this conference.

More information

Good luck!

1 comment:

Robert Arthur said...

It is important maori do not totally dominate. Otherwise, as apparently with the Tupuna Maunga Authority, scoring mana will take precedence over conservation and the interests of the public.
Maori and conservation always reminds me of a scene from a TV doco of the 1970s which explored eastern NI tribes. (it waqs labelled by a newspaper critic as an exercise in hori no hopery, not a statement any would dare today).At Waikaremoana one old sage reminisced that in his youth they harvested pidgeons by the sackful... he wondered where they had all gone....