Conservation Evidence is a free, authoritative information resource designed to support decisions about how to maintain and restore global biodiversity.
We summarise evidence from the scientific literature (studies) about the effects of conservation actions such as methods of habitat or species management. We produce synopses of evidence that review the effectiveness of all actions you could implement to conserve a given species group or habitat or to tackle a particular conservation issue. Expert panels are then asked to assess the effectiveness (or not) of actions, based on the summarized evidence (for more details see What Works in Conservation). We also publish new evidence in our online Conservation Evidence Journal.
Our ongoing review process continually extracts evidence from journals and other sources of evidence. So far we have searched over 330 English journals, with 30 important conservation journals (such as Conservation Biology, Biological Conservation, Ecology, Journal of Applied Ecology, Oryx) and systematic reviews published by the Collaboration for Environmental Evidence searched regularly. We have also searched over 325 non-English journals. In addition, we search 'grey literature' such as report series to focus on particular species groups or habitats. For more details see methods 'Finding evidence'.
As well as the existing synopses, we are currently developing new synopses on a range of subjects (see protocols). Additional topics are also being added to the synopses on the control of invasive species. We are also currently updating the synopsis on the conservation of birds.
The idea is to give conservationists easy access to the latest and most relevant knowledge to support conservation policy or management decisions.
Simply search for your species, habitat or issue of interest. Our site will present you with a list of possible actions you could take, along with a plain English summary of the available evidence for whether each one is effective (or not). It will also provide expert assessment of the effectiveness, based on the summarized evidence (see What Works in Conservation).
We do not make recommendations. This is because it is difficult to give evidence-based conservation advice that is appropriate for every context. Instead, we provide evidence and an assessment of that evidence, which should be interpreted by conservationists who understand their own site and national or regional situation.
This short video provides more information on evidence-based conservation and the Conservation Evidence project.
Here is a short film about our work featuring Sir David Attenborough.
Using the Conservation Evidence website
Watch this short video for tips on how to use the Conservation Evidence website.
Conservation Evidence team
Conservation Evidence is based at the University of Cambridge, UK, with collaborators and advisers in all continents of the world. The project was conceived by William J. Sutherland and is managed by Rebecca K Smith.
For the full team, including 70 synopsis authors, see Conservation Evidence team.
Additional published outputs
As well as publishing What Works in Conservation and our synopses, we also produce scientific articles, using the information collated or as part of the Conservation Evidence project, and contribute to popular articles such as blogs. View our list of additional published outputs.
Additional projects and collaborations
As well as collating the documented evidence, we also work on numerous other projects and collaborations to make the use and applicaiton of this evidence easier.
Conservation Evidence relies on support to continue its vital work to collate and share global evidence and co-design processes and tools that improve the outcomes for nature.
You can help transform conservation practice by supporting our work here.
The funding of the Miriam Rothschild Chair in Conservation Biology through Arcadia enabled the development of the website and funds the Managing Editor of the Conservation Evidence Journal.
Conservation Evidence currently receives funding from the A.G Leventis Foundation, Arcadia, the David and Claudia Harding Foundation, Lord and Lady Moran, the National Philanthropic Trust and the Natural Environment Research Council and has been funded by the British Ecological Society, Cambridge Conservation Initiative, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra), the Economic and Social Research Council, MAVA, Natural England, South West Water, Synchronicity Earth, The Nature Conservancy and Waitrose Ltd.