Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New means to communicate population risk assessments among scientists and decision-makers

Date:
June 11, 2013
Source:
Pensoft Publishers
Summary:
Population viability analyses (PVAs) are commonly used to assess extinction risks for species. Despite their many advantages and usefulness, many people find them hard to design, apply and communicate. In a new review, a team of researchers suggests that our capacity to learn from PVAs may be greatly improved using a common standard. The "DAC-PVA" protocol has hence been designed for supporting the effective Design, Application, and Communication of PVAs.

It's not a black swan, it's a black DAC. The DAC-PVA protocol tries to improve the Design, Application and Communication of Population Viability Analyses -- a central tool in conservation theory and practice.
Credit: Guy Pe'er; CC-BY 3.0

Population viability analysis (PVA) is a method used by conservation scientists for a range of purposes -- including advancing conservation theory, planning, policy and management. PVAs are particularly important for assessing the risks of population extinction and for comparing alternative management options to protect species. The fact that so many PVAs are already available, for hundreds of species, offers an exciting opportunity for learning and especially for moving from single-species experience to multi-species knowledge. But this opportunity is often lost in translation: PVAs are usually complex, and many people find them hard to design, apply and communicate. Many PVA descriptions also lack sufficient structure, and are difficult to understand, assess, or even repeat.

In a review now published in the journal Conservation Biology, an international team of 11 researchers have shown that these drawbacks form a true barrier for the use of PVAs as a means of collective learning. As part of the EU project SCALES, Guy Pe'er and colleagues suggest that there is a remedy to this problem: our capacity to learn from PVAs may be greatly improved by applying a common standard for Design, Application and Communication of PVAs -- or, what they called the "DAC-PVA" protocol.

The aim of the DAC-PVA protocol is to enhance communication and repeatability of PVAs, strengthen their credibility and relevance for policy and management. It should further improve the capacity to generalize from PVA findings across studies. The protocol is further accompanied by an interactive website (http://scales.ckff.si/scaletool/dac-pva.php), in order to enhance its usefulness.

Guy Pe'er: "There are many existing guidelines on how to design and implement reliable PVAs. There are also existing communication standards for documenting and communicating ecological models. But somehow, it seems that these two simply didn't manage to meet so far. This is sad because it means that many hundreds of existing PVAs, and many more that are likely to be developed and applied in the future, still do not effectively contribute to collective learning efforts or attempts to move from single-species results to supporting the conservation of biodiversity in its broader sense."

Klaus Henle: "PVAs are used very commonly nowadays. The IUCN suggests PVAs to be conducted for every species where enough data are available, and even offers guidelines on how to apply PVAs. Their use is particularly widespread for birds. We should strive to reach a point where, based on PVA knowledge, we could guess the conservation needs of species also without a PVA, for instance based on traits and ecological requirements. But in the absence of standardized reporting, and a collective effort to learn when such guesses are likely to work or fail, we may never reach this goal."

The idea of the protocol and the website is therefore to create a common template, used by PVA developers, users and readers, that would enhance communication between all of them. Thereby, the authors hope to make PVAs more policy-relevant, and policy-makers more aware of the broad range of potential uses of PVAs for nature conservation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Pensoft Publishers. The original story is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Guy Pe'er, Yiannis G. Matsinos, Karin Johst, Kamila W. Franz, Camille Turlure, Viktoriia Radchuk, Agnieszka H. Malinowska, Janelle M.r. Curtis, Ilona Naujokaitis-Lewis, Brendan A. Wintle, Klaus Henle. A Protocol for Better Design, Application, and Communication of Population Viability Analyses. Conservation Biology, 2013; DOI: 10.1111/cobi.12076

Cite This Page:

Pensoft Publishers. "New means to communicate population risk assessments among scientists and decision-makers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130611102202.htm>.
Pensoft Publishers. (2013, June 11). New means to communicate population risk assessments among scientists and decision-makers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130611102202.htm
Pensoft Publishers. "New means to communicate population risk assessments among scientists and decision-makers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130611102202.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Science & Society News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Bank of America's $17 Bln Settlement

Bank of America's $17 Bln Settlement

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 21, 2014) Bank of America's settlement is by far the largest amount paid by big banks facing mortgage securities probes. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Former TSA X-Ray Scanners Easily Tricked To Miss Weapons

Former TSA X-Ray Scanners Easily Tricked To Miss Weapons

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) Researchers found the scanners could be duped simply by placing a weapon off to the side of the body or encasing it under a plastic shield. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) Contains graphic content. He's only 17. But Johntrell Bowles has wanted to be a doctor from a young age, despite the odds against him. He was recently the youngest participant in a cadaver program at the Indiana University NW medical school. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Families Can Now Ask Twitter To Remove Photos Of Deceased

Families Can Now Ask Twitter To Remove Photos Of Deceased

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) In the wake of a high-profile harassment case, Twitter says family members can ask for photos of dying or dead relatives to be taken down. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins