Browsing by Subject "PRIORITIES"

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  • Rochette, Anne-Julie; Akpona, Jean Didier T.; Akpona, Hugues Adeloui; Akouehou, Gaston S.; Kwezi, Blanchard Mayundo; Djagoun, Chabi A. M. S.; Habonimana, Bernadette; Idohou, Rodrigue; Legba, Ingride S.; Nzigidahera, Benoit; Matilo, Augustin Orou; Taleb, Mohammed Sghir; Bamoninga, Benjamin Toirambe; Ivory, Sarah; de Bisthoven, Luc Janssens; Vanhove, Maarten P. M. (2019)
    There is an increasing need for monitoring schemes that help understand the evolution of the global biodiversity crisis and propose solutions for the future. Indicators, including temporal baselines, are crucial to measure the change in biodiversity over time, to evaluate progress towards its conservation and sustainable use and to set conservation priorities. They help design and monitor national and regional policies on biodiversity; they also feed into national reporting on international agreements such as the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Sustainable Development Goals. We analyse the methodological approach of five small African projects resulting from a call to promote indicator development, improve monitoring capacity and strengthen the science-policy interface in the field of biodiversity. We compared their approach to existing guidance provided by the international community, specifically the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership. To this end, we assess whether internationally recommended steps are effectively applied to national/local biodiversity monitoring in selected developing countries. We also present lessons learnt from workshop interactions between partners involved in these projects. Through our pilot projects we identified data availability and data accessibility, together with the involvement of stakeholders, as critical steps in indicator development. Moreover, there is a need for a better awareness and a wider application of the indicator concept itself. Hence, training of key actors both in the policy and science spheres is needed to operationalize indicators and ensure their continuity and sustainability. We hope that these case studies and lessons learnt can stimulate and support countries in the Global South to formulate policy-relevant biodiversity indicators.
  • dos Santos, J. W.; Correia, R. A.; Malhado, A. C. M.; Campos-Silva, J.; Teles, D.; Jepson, P.; Ladle, R. J. (2020)
    Scientific knowledge of species and the ecosystems they inhabit is the cornerstone of modern conservation. However, research effort is not spread evenly among taxa (taxonomic bias), which may constrain capacity to identify conservation risk and to implement effective responses. Addressing such biases requires an understanding of factors that promote or constrain the use of a particular species in research projects. To this end, we quantified conservation science knowledge of the world's extant non-marine mammal species (n = 4108) based on the number of published documents in journals indexed on Clarivate Analytics' Web of Science (TM). We use an innovative hurdle model approach to assess the relative importance of several ecological, biogeographical and cultural factors for explaining variation in research production between species. The most important variable explaining the presence/absence of conservation research was scientific capacity of countries within the range of the species, followed by body mass and years since the taxonomic description. Research volume (more than one document) was strongly associated with number of years since the data describing on that species, followed by scientific capacity within the range of species, high body mass and invasiveness. The threat status was weakly associated to explain the presence/absence and research volume in conservation research. These results can be interpreted as a consequence of the dynamic interplay between the perceived need for conservation research about a species and its appropriateness as a target of research. As anticipated, the scientific capacity of the countries where a species is found is a strong driver of conservation research bias, reflecting the high variation in conservation research funding and human resources between countries. Our study suggests that this bias could be most effectively reduced by a combination of investing in pioneering research, targeted funding and supporting research in countries with low scientific capacity and high biodiversity.
  • Wintle, Brendan A.; Kujala, Heini; Whitehead, Amy; Cameron, Alison; Veloz, Sam; Kukkala, Aija; Moilanen, Atte; Gordon, Ascelin; Lentini, Pia E.; Cadenhead, Natasha C. R.; Bekessy, Sarah A. (2019)
    Island biogeography theory posits that species richness increases with island size and decreases with isolation. This logic underpins much conservation policy and regulation, with preference given to conserving large, highly connected areas, and relative ambivalence shown toward protecting small, isolated habitat patches. We undertook a global synthesis of the relationship between the conservation value of habitat patches and their size and isolation, based on 31 systematic conservation planning studies across four continents. We found that small, isolated patches are inordinately important for biodiversity conservation. Our results provide a powerful argument for redressing the neglect of small, isolated habitat patches, for urgently prioritizing their restoration, and for avoiding simplistic application of island biogeography theory in conservation decisions.
  • Di Minin, Enrico; Brooks, Thomas; Toivonen, Tuuli; Butchart, Stuart; Heikinheimo, Vuokko; Watson, James; Burgess, Neil; Challender, Daniel; Goettsch, Barbara; Jenkins, Richard; Moilanen, Atte (2019)
    Overexploitation is one of the main threats to biodiversity, but the intensity of this threat varies geographically. We identified global concentrations, on land and at sea, of 4543 species threatened by unsustainable commercial harvesting. Regions under high-intensity threat (based on accessibility on land and on fishing catch at sea) cover 4.3% of the land and 6.1% of the seas and contain 82% of all species threatened by unsustainable harvesting and > 80% of the ranges of Critically Endangered species threatened by unsustainable harvesting. Currently, only 16% of these regions are covered by protected areas on land and just 6% at sea. Urgent actions are needed in these centers of unsustainable harvesting to ensure that use of species is sustainable and to prevent further species' extinctions.
  • Tolmacheva, Aleksandra; Savolainen, Sarianna; Kirveskari, Erika; Brandstack, Nina; Mäkelä, Jyrki P.; Shulga, Anastasia (2019)
    Objectives Long-term paired associative stimulation (PAS) is a non-invasive combination of transcranial magnetic stimulation and peripheral nerve stimulation and leads to improved hand motor function in individuals with incomplete traumatic tetraplegia. Spinal cord injuries (SCIs) can also be induced by neurological diseases. We tested a similar long-term PAS approach in patients with nontraumatic neurological SCI. Methods In this case series five patients with nontraumatic tetraplegia received PAS to the weaker upper limb 3 to 5 times per week for 6 weeks. Patients were evaluated with manual muscle testing (MMT) before and immediately after therapy and at the 1- and 6-month follow ups. Patients were also evaluated for spasticity, hand mechanical and digital dynamometry, pinch, and Box and Blocks tests. Results All patients had improved MMT values at all post-PAS evaluations. The mean±standard error MMT increase was 1.44±0.37 points (p=0.043) immediately after PAS, 1.57±0.4 points (p=0.043) at the 1-month follow-up, and 1.71±0.47 points (p=0.043) at the 6-month follow up. The pinch, digital dynamometry values, and Box and Blocks test results also improved in all patients. Conclusions Long-term PAS may be a safe and effective treatment for improving hand function in patients with nontraumatic tetraplegia. Significance This is the first report demonstrating the therapeutic potential of PAS for neurological SCI.