Leaders in Biodiversity Conservation: Botanic Gardens in the 21st Century
4 August 2014
Bringing together representatives from botanic gardens and academics; the Leaders in Biodiversity Conservation: Botanic Gardens in the 21st Century conference takes place on the 23rd, 24th and 25th of October at the Loyola Sustainability Research Centre in Montreal and be a chance to discuss the implications of the role of botanic gardens and similar institutions (natural history museums, zoos) in biodiversity conservation and its governance.
Organised with the support of the UN Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Quebec Centre for Biodiversity Science and BGCI, the conference will host keynote speeches from Dr. Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, the executive secretary of the UN Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Dr. David Galbraith, president of the Canadian Botanical Conservation Network, and Dr. Sara Oldfield, secretary general of BGCI. Renowned sociologist Dr. Esther Turnhout, who works on scientific representation in international biodiversity governance, has also confirmed her participation. Activities will include academic panels, thematic workshops, discussions, a guided visit of Concordia City Farm School and an outdoor BBQ. Post conference, a university press book and a peer-reviewed journal will be published.
Plant curation, education and public engagement are all still important parts of botanic gardens’ responsibilities, but their role has expanded. Seed banking, habitat restoration, and social roles in plant conservation are now significant aspects of their work. With support from BGCI, Botanic Gardens are taking on major roles in the governance of biodiversity conservation - developing and implementing the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation and working it through at national and regional levels. What effect do the changes in botanic gardens’ focus have on the direction, management and structure of the institutions? What are the challenges and opportunities to emerge? What lessons can be drawn from the responses to these new roles? These are the questions to be explored in the conference.
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