This course aims to prepare students to discuss major themes in Conservation Biology, critically examine a range of sources to draw informed conclusions, and creatively develop solutions for the future. The course has three main parts. First, it provides students with an understanding of the precepts of Conservation Biology – the distribution and importance of biodiversity, evidence as to the extent to which biodiversity is in decline, and reasons why it is in decline. Second, it considers whether decreasing biodiversity matters, philosophically and practically. Finally, using a range of case studies, it explores how biology can be harnessed to identify potential solutions. Case-studies will cover a range of approaches that combine socioeconomic and biological insights, for example, ecological restoration, sustainable harvesting, agrienvironment schemes, and marketing of ecosystem services.
This course counts as one of the required two 400-level seminars