IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature

Gland, Switzerland

IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature

Gland, Switzerland
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Gustafson S.,7600 Wisconsin Avenue | Joehl Cadena A.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Ngo C.C.,Asian Institute of Management | Kawash A.,UN World Food Programme and 108 Street 63 | And 2 more authors.
Climatic Change | Year: 2017

Climate change is increasingly affecting rural areas worldwide. The Lower Mekong Basin (LMB) is at particular risk due to heat stress, changing rainfall patterns, rising sea levels, and more frequent and extreme climatic events. It is imperative that local-level adaptation plans are developed in a manner that builds resilience to these growing threats. Strategies for developing adaptation plans tend to comprise predominantly science-led or predominantly community-led processes. This study examines an approach that balances inputs from both processes in characterizing community vulnerability as a component of the adaptation planning workflow. Evaluation sites are located within four distinct sub-regions of the LMB: the Vietnam Mekong Delta, the Annamite Mountains of Lao PDR, the Cambodia central lowlands, and the mid-elevation forests of northern Thailand. Our results indicate that by merging science-based data with community-level perspective, knowledge gaps from both sides are filled and a more comprehensive understanding of vulnerability is factored into adaptation planning. © 2017 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht


Thompson B.S.,National University of Singapore | Bladon A.J.,Imperial College London | Fahad Z.H.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Mohsanin S.,Nature Conservation Management NACOM | And 2 more authors.
Fisheries Research | Year: 2016

Fisheries research is hindered by a paucity of multi-disciplinary tools for broadly assessing the societal appropriateness and ecological effectiveness of fishing regulations. This study presents a multi-disciplinary assessment framework that combines ecological, spatial, and social research methods to reveal the knowledge, opinions, activities, and impacts of fishers. The framework is applied to a multi-gear, multi-species, data-poor coastal fishery in the Bangladesh Sundarbans to demonstrate the complementarity of the methods, commensurability of the data, and how results can be interpreted to provide a broad initial overview of the fishery in a standardized manner that can guide future research and management. Data were obtained for 26 catches across five different gear types, 62 finfish species, 20 fishing grounds that were mapped, and 67 respondents across four villages regarding their awareness, acceptability, and compliance (AAC) of eight existing and seven proposed fishing regulations. AAC scores varied starkly for different regulations, and all proposed regulations scored lower on acceptability than any existing regulation. A number of recommendations are made to improve specific gear and species regulations; for example, protecting the locally endangered species Scatophagus argus (currently under no fishing regulation) through a ban on the long-shore net that heavily impacts the species, rather than a ban on the species itself. Broader management recommendations are also made including spatially targeted enforcement, awareness raising, and capacity building approaches. The positives and limitations of the framework are discussed. The framework is particularly applicable to small-scale fisheries in the developing world, and is useful as a pilot study. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.


Sayer J.A.,James Cook University | Endamana D.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Ruiz-Perez M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Boedhihartono A.K.,James Cook University | And 4 more authors.
International Forestry Review | Year: 2012

The forests of SE Cameroon lie within the Sangha tri-national landscape (TNS), a priority area for biodiversity conservation under the Congo Basin Forest Partnership. A monitoring program showed minimal changes in conservation and local livelihoods indicators from 2006 to 2008. Following the global financial crisis in late 2008 global demand for timber decreased and this led to suspension of logging activities and lay-offs of staff by logging companies; both biodiversity and livelihood indicators deteriorated. The unemployed workers lost their incomes, experienced declining living standards and reverted to poaching and slash and burn agriculture. Pygmies were no longer able to obtain employment in Bantu agricultural plots, sell forest products to logging company employees or sell bushmeat to passing logging trucks. These global economic forces had greater impact on livelihoods and the environment than local interventions by conservation organizations. Livelihood indicators improved in 2010 and 2011 when the economy picked-up but those for environmental values did not recover as rapidly.


Rodriguez J.P.,Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research | Rodriguez-Clark K. M.,Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research | Baillie J.E.M.,Zoological Society of London | Ash N.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | And 20 more authors.
Conservation Biology | Year: 2011

The potential for conservation of individual species has been greatly advanced by the International Union for Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) development of objective, repeatable, and transparent criteria for assessing extinction risk that explicitly separate risk assessment from priority setting. At the IV World Conservation Congress in 2008, the process began to develop and implement comparable global standards for ecosystems. A working group established by the IUCN has begun formulating a system of quantitative categories and criteria, analogous to those used for species, for assigning levels of threat to ecosystems at local, regional, and global levels. A final system will require definitions of ecosystems; quantification of ecosystem status; identification of the stages of degradation and loss of ecosystems; proxy measures of risk (criteria); classification thresholds for these criteria; and standardized methods for performing assessments. The system will need to reflect the degree and rate of change in an ecosystem's extent, composition, structure, and function, and have its conceptual roots in ecological theory and empirical research. On the basis of these requirements and the hypothesis that ecosystem risk is a function of the risk of its component species, we propose a set of four criteria: recent declines in distribution or ecological function, historical total loss in distribution or ecological function, small distribution combined with decline, or very small distribution. Most work has focused on terrestrial ecosystems, but comparable thresholds and criteria for freshwater and marine ecosystems are also needed. These are the first steps in an international consultation process that will lead to a unified proposal to be presented at the next World Conservation Congress in 2012. © 2010 Society for Conservation Biology.


Brussaard L.,Wageningen University | Caron P.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Campbell B.,Copenhagen University | Lipper L.,FAO | And 4 more authors.
Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability | Year: 2010

Production ecology and conservation biology have long focused on providing the knowledge base for intensive food production and biodiversity conservation, respectively. With increasing global food insecurity and continuing biodiversity decline, we show that the largely separate development of these fields is counterproductive. Scenario analyses suggest that feeding the world is possible without further encroachment of agriculture into natural ecosystems. Without ignoring the necessary demographic, socio-economic, institutional and governance requirements, we make the case for a science that develops the best ecological means to produce food in a way that has substantially less negative effects on biodiversity and associated ecosystem services and, indeed, should be able to contribute to their persistence and enhancement. Recent developments in trait-based ecology should soon make it possible to adapt and (re-)design agroecosystems to meet both goals of biodiversity conservation and food security. However, there are real tensions between, on the one hand, the opportunity costs of biodiversity conservation (for direct use and for conversion to agriculture) and on the other hand, the ecosystem service values and option values associated with biodiversity. We elaborate the management of plant genetic resources as a metaphor of the tensions between such values of biodiversity and ecosystem services in general. We conclude that significant changes in policies, institutions and practices are necessary to make advances in ecology work for reconciling biodiversity conservation and food security. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.


Brooks E.G.E.,University of Southampton | Smith K.G.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Holland R.A.,University of Southampton | Poppy G.M.,University of Southampton | Eigenbrod F.,University of Southampton
Ecology and Society | Year: 2014

Contingent valuation is one of the most commonly used methodologies utilized in ecosystem service valuation, thereby including a participatory approach to many such assessments. However, inclusion of nonmonetary stakeholder priorities is still uncommon in ecosystem service valuations and disaggregation of stakeholders is all but absent from practice. We look at four site-scale wetland ecosystem service valuations from Asia that used nonmonetary participatory stated preference techniques from a range of stakeholders, and compare these prioritizations to those obtained from the largest monetary assessments available globally, the Ecosystem Service Value Database (ESVD). Stakeholder assessment suggests very different priorities to those from monetary assessments, yet priorities between different sites remained broadly consistent. Disaggregation of beneficiaries in one site showed marked differences in values between stakeholders. Monetary values correlate positively with values held by government officers and business owners, but negatively with fishermen and women who are relying most directly on the wetland ecosystem services. Our findings emphasize that ecosystem service assessment, monetary or otherwise, must capture the diversity of values present across stakeholder groups to incorporate site scale management issues, particularly in relation to poverty alleviation. © 2014 by the author(s).


Jefferson R.L.,University of Plymouth | Bailey I.,University of Plymouth | Laffoley D.D.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Richards J.P.,Open Polytechnic | Attrill M.J.,University of Plymouth
Marine Policy | Year: 2014

The damaging effects of human activities on marine health suggest that a major shift is required in the way marine systems are used by individuals. Identifying how to engage society in this shift is an on-going debate. This includes strengthening the positive connections between society and the sea. This study uses a survey (. n=1047) to investigate UK public perceptions of subtidal species and marine health to assess whether it is possible to build more positive connections between society and the sea. Respondents showed considerable interest in traditionally charismatic species (puffins, seals and seahorses) although many respondents thought these species did not live in UK seas. Gender and experience of marine environments influenced public perceptions of species. Public perceptions of marine health showed issues such as litter to be considered as the greatest indicator of poor health. Ecological concepts of habitat integrity and biodiversity were also rated as important to marine health. Social values were found to influence public perceptions of marine health. The results show that perceptions are far from uniform across the population, and such diversity of perceptions is likely impact upon methods to catalyse societal engagement with marine conservation. These findings reinforce previous research on public perceptions of UK seas, and identify opportunities for building positive connections between society and the sea. Research priorities to further the debate of engaging society with the sea are identified. © 2013 .


Mainka S.A.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | McNeely J.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature
Ecology and Society | Year: 2011

As the world joins forces to support the people of Haiti on their long road of recovery following the January 2010 earthquake, plans and strategies should take into consideration past experiences from other postdisaster recovery efforts with respect to integrating ecosystem considerations. Sound ecosystem management can both support the medium and long-term needs for recovery as well as help to buffer the impacts of future extreme natural events, which for Haiti are likely to include both hurricanes and earthquakes. An additional challenge will be to include the potential impacts of climate change into ecosystem management strategies. © 2011 by the author(s).


Barker T.,University of Liverpool | Irfanullah H.M.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Moss B.,University of Liverpool
Freshwater Biology | Year: 2010

Repeat sampling in daytime within a lily (Nuphar lutea) bed and in open water showed distinct heterogeneities in the three-dimensional distributions of water chemistry and planktonic organisms on centimetre to decimetre scales. Vertical gradients of physico-chemical variables that did not exist at dawn developed during the day in both sites, as available nutrients were released from the sediments and were consumed towards the surface. Distributions of algal standing crop suggest limitation by both nutrients and grazing. Marked variability in distributions may question the assumptions often made about the homogeneity of plankton and available nutrient distributions in open water and in macrophyte stands of shallow lakes. Although simple sampling regimes for monitoring of water quality may be adequate for many purposes, they miss a fine structure in the water that is inherently interesting in understanding the underlying processes of plankton function. © 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Irfanullah H.M.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Azad M.A.K.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Kamruzzaman M.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature | Wahed M.A.,IUCN International Union for Conservation of Nature
Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge | Year: 2011

Floating gardening, a form of hydroponics using aquatic plants as the medium, is a traditional cultivation system in southern Bangladesh practiced for year-round seedling and vegetable production. The livelihoods of marginalized people of the wetlands in North-eastern Bangladesh (haor region) are often constrained by 7-8 months water stagnation due to floods. A pioneering attempt at scaling up floating gardening in this haor region coincided with repeated, devastated floods in 2007. This paper summarizes the endeavour of haor dwellers in overcoming post-flood situation by up-taking this indigenous farming-technique for the first time as a result of intense motivation, capacity development, and determination. Despite some limitations and challenges, floating gardening and subsequent winter vegetable cultivation on soil was found to be useful for improving nutritional security, household income, and land-use capacity of extreme poor, landless people, especially in the post-disaster months. Potentials of floating gardening to adapt to changing climate are also highlighted.

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