Engaging the worldwide Red List community: Building capacity for assessing species´ extinction risk

The IUCN Red List is recognized as the most comprehensive source of information on species´ conservation status, based on the best available knowledge from the world´s leading experts. It is widely influential in informing conservation planning, resource allocation, national and international conservation policies and priority-setting strategies (including intergovernmental agreements such as CBD/CMS/CITES and other Conventions), directing scientific research, and generating public awareness of the mounting biodiversity crisis and its impact on human well-being.

Following the growth of the IUCN Red List, interest in producing national and regional Red Lists according to the IUCN methodology has grown exponentially. Global assessments of endemic species can be incorporated into national and regional red lists and can inform local, national and international conservation decisions, while regional and national red list assessments can feed into the global IUCN Red List, thus building the knowledge base and informing effective conservation action at all spatial scales. Yet, many challenges remain.

With increasing use of the Red List in conservation policy and process-based decisions that involve human activities, development and livelihoods, it is imperative that Red List assessments adhere strictly to the objective and scientific criteria that guide the process. This session will provide an opportunity for members from throughout IUCN´s vast network to learn IUCN Red List methodology and standards to conduct both global and regional Red List assessments. Participants will gain an understanding of the issues that affect extinction risk assessment, as well as the multiple applications of IUCN Red List data to global and national policy and practical conservation action. The session will thus illustrate the benefits of the Red List and how to use the wealth of information it contains to a wide range of stakeholders.

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