Tuesday 10 February 2015

Biosciences Seminar Speaker - 12 February 2015

Biosciences Seminar Series - Winter 2015
12 February 2015 - 1pm - Zoology Museum (Wallace 129)

Biodiversity and ecosystem services: science-policy advances

Prof. Georgina Mace

It is becoming increasingly clear that the well-being of human populations crucially relies on ecological processes and, in general, on biodiversity. Developing a better understanding and quantification of these so-called 'ecosystem services' provided by biodiversity is one of the research interests of our next speaker, Prof Georgina Mace. Georgina is Professor of Biodiversity and Ecosystems at the Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research at University College London, and has markedly contributed to the development of conservation science through her contributions to research as well as policy development. Examples are the biodiversity sections of the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment, the development of new IUCN Red List criteria based on actual data, not expert opinions, or her contributions to population viability assessments of natural and captive populations of conservation concern.

Ecosystems are complexes where biotic and abiotic components come together at a range of spatial and temporal scales. They have become a central focus for both scientific understanding and management of the wide range of benefits that people derive from nature, with significant policy and economic interest. 

In the past, nature was regarded as important in its own right; its benefits were abundant and mostly available to people at no cost. However, rapidly rising demands for natural resources and pressures caused by environmental change are leading to new approaches in society and the environment to secure benefits for the future. 

Based on recent policy initiatives in the UK and internationally I will present new, interdisciplinary science that brings together ecology, environmental change and environmental economics, and suggest new ways of considering the links between people and the environment.

Hope to see many of you - everyone most welcome to attend!

modified from Mace et al. (2012) TREE

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