5.00
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10545/292690
Title:
Funding begets biodiversity
Authors:
Ahrends, Antje; Burgess, Neil D.; Gereau, Roy E.; Marchant, Rob; Bulling, Mark T.; Lovett, Jon C.; Platts, Philip J.; Kindemba, Victoria Wilkins; Owen, Nisha; Fanning, Eibleis; Rahbek, Carsten
Abstract:
Aim  Effective conservation of biodiversity relies on an unbiased knowledge of its distribution. Conservation priority assessments are typically based on the levels of species richness, endemism and threat. Areas identified as important receive the majority of conservation investments, often facilitating further research that results in more species discoveries. Here, we test whether there is circularity between funding and perceived biodiversity, which may reinforce the conservation status of areas already perceived to be important while other areas with less initial funding may remain overlooked. Location  Eastern Arc Mountains, Tanzania. Methods  We analysed time series data (1980–2007) of funding (n = 134 projects) and plant species records (n = 75,631) from a newly compiled database. Perceived plant diversity, over three decades, is regressed against funding and environmental factors, and variances decomposed in partial regressions. Cross-correlations are used to assess whether perceived biodiversity drives funding or vice versa. Results  Funding explained 65% of variation in perceived biodiversity patterns – six times more variation than accounted for by 34 candidate environmental factors. Cross-correlation analysis showed that funding is likely to be driving conservation priorities and not vice versa. It was also apparent that investment itself may trigger further investments as a result of reduced start-up costs for new projects in areas where infrastructure already exists. It is therefore difficult to establish whether funding, perceived biodiversity, or both drive further funding. However, in all cases, the results suggest that regional assessments of biodiversity conservation importance may be biased by investment. Funding effects might also confound studies on mechanisms of species richness patterns. Main conclusions  Continued biodiversity loss commands urgent conservation action even if our knowledge of its whereabouts is incomplete; however, by concentrating inventory funds in areas already perceived as important in terms of biodiversity and/or where start-up costs are lower, we risk losing other areas of underestimated or unknown value.
Citation:
Funding begets biodiversity 2011, 17 (2):191 Diversity and Distributions
Journal:
Diversity and Distributions
Issue Date:
24-May-2013
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10545/292690
DOI:
10.1111/j.1472-4642.2010.00737.x
Additional Links:
http://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/j.1472-4642.2010.00737.x
Type:
Article
ISSN:
13669516
Appears in Collections:
Biological Sciences Research Group

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorAhrends, Antjeen
dc.contributor.authorBurgess, Neil D.en
dc.contributor.authorGereau, Roy E.en
dc.contributor.authorMarchant, Roben
dc.contributor.authorBulling, Mark T.en
dc.contributor.authorLovett, Jon C.en
dc.contributor.authorPlatts, Philip J.en
dc.contributor.authorKindemba, Victoria Wilkinsen
dc.contributor.authorOwen, Nishaen
dc.contributor.authorFanning, Eibleisen
dc.contributor.authorRahbek, Carstenen
dc.date.accessioned2013-05-24T09:02:50Z-
dc.date.available2013-05-24T09:02:50Z-
dc.date.issued2013-05-24-
dc.identifier.citationFunding begets biodiversity 2011, 17 (2):191 Diversity and Distributionsen
dc.identifier.issn13669516-
dc.identifier.doi10.1111/j.1472-4642.2010.00737.x-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10545/292690-
dc.description.abstractAim  Effective conservation of biodiversity relies on an unbiased knowledge of its distribution. Conservation priority assessments are typically based on the levels of species richness, endemism and threat. Areas identified as important receive the majority of conservation investments, often facilitating further research that results in more species discoveries. Here, we test whether there is circularity between funding and perceived biodiversity, which may reinforce the conservation status of areas already perceived to be important while other areas with less initial funding may remain overlooked. Location  Eastern Arc Mountains, Tanzania. Methods  We analysed time series data (1980–2007) of funding (n = 134 projects) and plant species records (n = 75,631) from a newly compiled database. Perceived plant diversity, over three decades, is regressed against funding and environmental factors, and variances decomposed in partial regressions. Cross-correlations are used to assess whether perceived biodiversity drives funding or vice versa. Results  Funding explained 65% of variation in perceived biodiversity patterns – six times more variation than accounted for by 34 candidate environmental factors. Cross-correlation analysis showed that funding is likely to be driving conservation priorities and not vice versa. It was also apparent that investment itself may trigger further investments as a result of reduced start-up costs for new projects in areas where infrastructure already exists. It is therefore difficult to establish whether funding, perceived biodiversity, or both drive further funding. However, in all cases, the results suggest that regional assessments of biodiversity conservation importance may be biased by investment. Funding effects might also confound studies on mechanisms of species richness patterns. Main conclusions  Continued biodiversity loss commands urgent conservation action even if our knowledge of its whereabouts is incomplete; however, by concentrating inventory funds in areas already perceived as important in terms of biodiversity and/or where start-up costs are lower, we risk losing other areas of underestimated or unknown value.en
dc.relation.urlhttp://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/j.1472-4642.2010.00737.xen
dc.rightsArchived with thanks to Diversity and Distributionsen
dc.titleFunding begets biodiversity-
dc.typeArticleen
dc.identifier.journalDiversity and Distributionsen
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