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Why Biodiversity?

Photo credit: iStock/Alexis Gonzalez

We are currently facing a biodiversity crisis, with a significant decline in the variety and abundance of species and ecosystems worldwide. According to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), one million species are threatened with extinction due to human activities such as habitat loss, overexploitation, pollution, and climate change. This loss of biodiversity has far-reaching consequences, including the disruption of ecosystem services, such as pollination and carbon sequestration, which are critical for human well-being. 

Biodiversity research is crucial because it helps us understand Earth's complex and interconnected web of life. It enables us to identify the various species, ecosystems, and genetic diversity that exist in nature and how they function together. This knowledge is essential in developing effective strategies for conservation, restoration, and sustainable use of our natural resources.

Multidisciplinary Research 

Multidisciplinary research can play a crucial role in mainstreaming biodiversity across different sectors and levels of governance. Biodiversity mainstreaming involves integrating biodiversity considerations into decision-making processes and policies across different sectors, such as agriculture, forestry, fisheries, and energy, as well as at different levels, from local to global.
Multidisciplinary research can contribute to mainstreaming biodiversity by providing a more comprehensive and integrated understanding of biodiversity's ecological, economic, social, and cultural dimensions.

The Role of Social Sciences

Social sciences play a significant role in biodiversity research by examining how human behavior, social structures, and institutions impact biodiversity conservation efforts. They help identify the social, economic, and cultural factors that drive biodiversity loss, and how we can address these issues through policies, governance, and community-based initiatives. Social science research also helps us understand how different stakeholders perceive and value biodiversity and how we can promote greater awareness and engagement among diverse groups.