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Supporting biodiversity conservation at the interface between the built environment and wild nature in a 21 Century Asian city

Prof Les Firbank (SoB), Dr Martin Dallimer (SEE)

Project partner(s): Dr Simon Attwood (WWF, Singapore)

Contact email: l.firbank@leeds.ac.uk

Summary

Urbanisation is a major threat to biodiversity, but has the potential to support biodiversity conservation if the opportunities to engage local people with biodiversity are realised. This study focusses on one or more cities in South East Asia. The project involves assessing habitats and taxa along transects crossing current city boundaries, quantifying how biodiversity and conservation quality varies with distance from the city, and how it may change over time, and how it depends on the steepness of the gradient (e.g. from buildings to forest, or through farmland). Sites will be selected using remotely-sensed and other data, and transects established for biodiversity field assessments across the urban / rural boundaries to understand the spatial and temporal elements of the impacts of urban expansion on biodiversity. The value given to biodiversity along such transects by local people will be ascertained through surveys and focus groups. This knowledge will be used to suggest strategies for increasing awareness of biodiversity and thereby supporting conservation. The project will be co-managed by WWF Singapore, who will help work with local stakeholders, schools and citizen groups, and who will take potential recommendations forward.

Related undergraduate subjects:

  • Biodiversity
  • Biodiversity conservation
  • Biology
  • Conservation
  • Conservation biology
  • Ecology
  • Environmental conservation
  • Environmental policy
  • Environmental science
  • Sustainability and environmental management
  • Zoology