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Guiding principles for rewilding

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DOI

  • Steve Carver, University of Leeds
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  • Ian Convery, University of Cumbria
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  • Sally Hawkins, University of Cumbria
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  • Rene Beyers, University of British Columbia
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  • Adam Eagle, The Lifescape Project
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  • Zoltan Kun, Wild Europe
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  • Erwin Van Maanen, Rewilding Foundation
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  • Yue Cao, Tsinghua University
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  • Mark Fisher, University of Leeds
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  • Stephen R. Edwards, Commission for Ecosystem Management, IUCN
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  • Cara Nelson, University of Montana
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  • George D. Gann, The Institute for Regional Conservation, Society for Ecological Restoration
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  • Steve Shurter, White Oak Conservation
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  • Karina Aguilar, Agencia Metropolitana de Bosques Urbanos del AMG
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  • Angela Andrade, Conservation International Colombia, Commission for Ecosystem Management, IUCN
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  • William J. Ripple, Oregon State University
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  • John Davis, The Rewilding Institute
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  • Anthony Sinclair, University of British Columbia
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  • Marc Bekoff, University of Colorado Boulder
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  • Reed Noss, Florida Institute for Conservation Science
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  • Dave Foreman, The Rewilding Institute
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  • Hanna Pettersson, University of Leeds
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  • Meredith Root-Bernstein, Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Center of Applied Ecology and Sustainability (CAPES), Universidad Austral de Chile
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  • Jens Christian Svenning
  • Peter Taylor, University of Leeds
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  • Sophie Wynne-Jones, Bangor University
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  • Alan Watson Featherstone, Freelance Ecologist
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  • Camilla Fløjgaard
  • Mark Stanley-Price, University of Oxford
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  • Laetitia M. Navarro, German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg
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  • Toby Aykroyd, Wild Europe
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  • Alison Parfitt, University of Leeds
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  • Michael Soulé, Society for Conservation Biology

There has been much recent interest in the concept of rewilding as a tool for nature conservation, but also confusion over the idea, which has limited its utility. We developed a unifying definition and 10 guiding principles for rewilding through a survey of 59 rewilding experts, a summary of key organizations’ rewilding visions, and workshops involving over 100 participants from around the world. The guiding principles convey that rewilding exits on a continuum of scale, connectivity, and level of human influence and aims to restore ecosystem structure and functions to achieve a self-sustaining autonomous nature. These principles clarify the concept of rewilding and improve its effectiveness as a tool to achieve global conservation targets, including those of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. Finally, we suggest differences in rewilding perspectives lie largely in the extent to which it is seen as achievable and in specific interventions. An understanding of the context of rewilding projects is the key to success, and careful site-specific interpretations will help achieve the aims of rewilding.

Original languageEnglish
JournalConservation Biology
Number of pages12
ISSN0888-8892
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2021

    Research areas

  • definition, ecosystem management, goals, guiding principles, rewilding

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