Who's going to save the world? Building the next generation of conservation leaders

The sixth extinction is underway and our species and ecosystems are in crisis. To fight this, we need conservation capacity – the knowledge, tools and resources to effectively manage wildlife, habitats and ecosystems – which so far has been traditionally lacking in those countries richest in natural resources.

Despite capacity building being a key conservation action, the process has been described as ‘a risky, murky, messy business with unpredictable and unquantifiable outcomes, uncertain methodologies, contested objectives, unintended consequences and long time lags’ (Morgan, 1998).

As yet, there has been no systematic approach to undertaking capacity building, or for monitoring and evaluating the success (or otherwise) of such initiatives. This meeting will explore different approaches to training the next generation of conservation leaders, to develop a set of standard recommendations for practice. This will build on the key findings and strategic solutions proposed in the first ever international conference on capacity building for conservation (Columbia, 2013) and highlight examples of successful training initiatives, ranging from vocational training to taught courses and e-learning.

(Reference: Morgan P. 1998. Capacity and Capacity Development: Some Strategies. Policy Branch, CIDA, Hull, Canada.


  • Kiragu Mwangi, Programme Manager, Conservation Leadership Programme, BirdLife International
  • Marianne Carter, Director, Conservation Capacity & Leadership, Fauna and Flora International
  • Simon Black, Researcher & Learning and Development Consultant, DICE, University of Kent
  • Olivia Couchman, EDGE Fellows Co-ordinator, EDGE of Existence Programme, Zoological Society of London
  • Rosie Trevelyan, Director, Tropical Biology Association 
  • Phill Hullah, CEO, Floream

This meeting will be chaired by Mark O’Connell, Director, ERT Conservation.

Booking is not necessary for this event - seating is allocated on a first come, first served basis. Further details on talks and speakers will be available approximately one month prior to the event, so please check back on this page.

3 course dinner with the speakers

A dinner will follow this Science and Conservation Event and everyone is welcome. Dinner places cost £35 per person including two glasses of wine and reservations should be made before 5pm on Wednesday 4 June.

This event in the 'Wildlife Conservation' series will begin at 6.00pm (doors from 5.00pm) and talks are scheduled to finish at 7.45pm; admission is free and open to everyone (no advance booking or registration required). This event will be held in the ZSL Meeting Rooms and seats will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

ZSL Science and Conservation Events: An essential part of ZSL's work is to communicate relevant, high-quality zoological and conservation science. The integrated ZSL Science and Conservation Events programme includes Symposia, and the new 'Wildlife Conservation' and 'Communicating Science' series. Topics cover a wide variety of zoological and conservation themes, and international experts present and discuss their research.

Further Information: please contact Megan Orpwood-Russell, Scientific Meetings Coordinator, Zoological Society of London, Regents Park, London NW1 4RY.
Tel:+44 (0)20 7449 6227. Fax: +44 (0)20 7449 6411. E-mail: megan.orpwood-russell@zsl.org.

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