Science and Biodiversity Strategy 2021 - 2030
Responding to the Biodiversity Crisis and Climate Emergency
Launched in June 2021, our Science and Biodiversity Strategy is a direct response to the Biodiversity Crisis and the Climate Emergency.
It reflects the urgent need for action to: Secure a nature-rich future in the face of global environmental change; develop nature-based solutions to climate change, and support the sustainable utilisation of the planet’s natural resources.
The Science and Biodiversity Strategy is underpinned by the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh's overall mission to explore, conserve and explain the world of plants for a better future. Below is an outline of our key priorities:
Read our Strategy for 2021-2026: Responding to the Biodiversity Crisis and Climate Emergency
Image: Pine forest, Rothiemurchus Forest, Cairngorms © Mark Hamblin/scotlandbigpicture.com
Our Research Priorities
Unlocking Knowledge and Understanding of Plants and Fungi for the Beneﬁt of Society
Discovery Science: Understanding Plant and Fungal Diversity
- Accelerating biodiversity discovery, characterisation and mapping, to support conservation planning and land-use choices
- Technological innovation including large-scale use of genomic data for biodiversity characterisation and monitoring, and development of data-portals and workflows to support large-scale analyses of biodiversity data and trends
Global Environmental Change: Understanding biodiversity and ecosystem change
- Understanding, quantifying and predicting drivers of change leading to biodiversity loss, at scales ranging from individual species to major biomes
- Developing and implementing rapid threat assessments to prioritise conservation actions and interventions to minimise biodiversity loss and extinction
Conservation and Sustainability: Delivering science to enable the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity
- Developing integrated strategies to support the conservation and sustainable utilisation of natural capital and the maintenance of ecosystem services
- Developing and implementing restoration plans that lead to net gains for biodiversity and/or nature-based solutions to climate change
Conserving and Developing Botanical Collections as a Global Resource
Collections Custodians: Curating and enriching the botanical collections held at RBGE, and supporting the wider global network of botanical collections
- Increasing the number and diversity of threatened plant species in ex situ conservation collections to protect against extinction
- Collections digitisation to enable global access to collections and data, to support scientific and cultural research, and to underpin conservation planning
- Curating and protecting the collections held at RBGE, and enhancing the environmental sustainability of our collections management practices
Enriching and Empowering Individuals and Communities through Learning and Engagement with Plants and Fungi
Knowledge and skills sharing: Growing global capacity in biodiversity science, conservation and horticulture
- Establishing a Biodiversity Skills Centre, mobilising and democratising knowledge to address national and international training needs in biodiversity science, horticulture, practical conservation and sustainability
- Targeted programmes translating research into practice, working with scientists, communities and governments in Scotland and around the world to understand, conserve, restore and sustainably use biodiversity
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