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Strategic Plan

The 2016-2018 Strategic Plan Update outlines the agency’s mission and vision and provides a three-year plan roadmap. A core team consisting of employees from the field, states and various disciplines worked with national leadership to develop a practical plan to help address conservation challenges and identify opportunities for improvement going forward. Feedback from both employees and partners were used to craft this document. Download here.

The plan focuses on these goals and initiatives:

  • Delivering high-quality science and technology for private lands conservation 
  • Promoting productive working lands and healthy waters 
  • Promoting and enhancing productive agricultural landscapes 
  • Supporting healthy watersheds and diverse land use communities increase organizational effectiveness and efficiency
  • Creating a climate of inclusion and foster diversity so private lands conser­vation will thrive

NRCS will regularly use the strategic plan to develop specific tactics to meet natural resource challenges and opportunities. Projections are that the world population will increase by 2 to 3 billion people in the next four decades. With that increase comes the need to increase our food production capability by at least 70 percent. Our challenge will be to increase our productivity sustainably; making room for all the creatures with whom we share this earth and in a way that ensures that those little Americans who aren’t here yet will have the same bounty we enjoy today.

The NRCS Strategic Plan maps the processes for setting priority goals, targets, and mileposts and shows ways to implement action plans and budget.


Conservation STAT coverConservationSTAT is the Agency’s data driven performance process to monitor progress, address challenges and reach consensus to achieve results. Through ConservationSTAT, NRCS carries out its annual actions to implement the 2011-2015 Strategic Plan. ConservationSTAT links Annual Initiatives to the Agency’s performance measures and ensures the Agency strategic plan is on schedule. ConservationSTAT helps identify priorities, define desired results, and develops methods to measure results. Through regularly scheduled routine meetings leadership can review accomplishments, make corrective adjustments and find improvement methods. Success depends on a serious commitment of time and effort from NRCS Leadership.

The NRCS Annual Initiatives in ConservationSTAT are not routine, yearly efforts, but unique activities that will move the agency forward. With ConservationSTAT, people are mobilized to produce specific results to make NRCS a responsive, accountable, and cost effective agency.

ConservationSTAT policy is maintained in the “General Manual_340_401_E – ConservationSTAT.”