This research developed an approach to identify ecologically important areas at local scales and explained how the results of this approach could contribute to extend the protected areas in the Republic of Korea (ROK). While most developed countries have considered various biotic and abiotic factors, ecological processes, migration routes, habitat connectivity, ecosystem services, and etc. to determine the protected areas, ROK has considered a few factors focusing on biodiversity, landscape, and the habitats of endangered organisms. However, for sustainable management of our nature, we need comprehensive understanding of various ecosystem factors and interactions among them at local scales in designating protected areas. For this, we developed a conceptual model based on the ecological engineering approach and then explained how the results of this approach could contribute to extend the protected areas. In particular, we considered future land-use and climate change in determining the priority areas for novel protected areas. Our research suggested an effective methodology 1) to include various ecosystem factors and 2) to consider future environmental changes as well as current environmental conditions in finding the ecologically important areas and prioritizing these areas. However, our approach has limitations on the realworld applications due to the lack of fundamental information and data on our ecosystems. To improve the effectiveness of our approach in the real-world applications, we need various longterm ecological research results, environmental and ecological monitoring data, and both current and future spatial environmental data.