The quote "Nature is the foundation of business. Ecology sets the rules for economy. Thus, damaging nature is damaging business. Like cutting the branch we sit on" assigns the tremendous importance to conserving biodiversity. Yet, there are compelling evidences to suggest that biodiversity is being adversely impacted due to unsustainable use and other profound causes linked to our development models. As a consequence of unsustainable use of natural resources, combined with the needs of a growing global population and climate change is seriously jeopardizing the health of our ecosystems and resulting in biodiversity decline. Biodiversity must therefore be tackled together by integrating relevant concerns into the decisions and institutions and that drive development– a process known as 'mainstreaming'.

Sustainability and resilience thinking are both globally relevant concepts that signal conservation of nature in its entirety for reducing poverty, creating sustainable livelihoods, promoting economic growth and tackling climate change. EIA offers opportunities to mainstream biodiversity to promote transformational change in attitudes and responsibilities that can link seemingly incompatible elements such as sustainability and development and improve preparedness for climate change.

This two-day course focuses on improving the role and scope of IA for connecting the dots between biodiversity, sustainable development, human well-being and climate change. For IA professionals, the course will share practice to harness the power of natural solutions to enhance livelihoods, sustain economies and build resilience to a changing climate. Business groups will better understand why they must pay for biodiversity conservation as a debt for destruction from past actions and as dues for drawing from the nature in future. For economists, the course re-emphasises that economy is just a subset of the ecological system. For decision-makers, the course will highlight the consequence of 'biodiversity-blind' development intervention and help them make informed decisions related to ecosystem management.

Level: Intermediate/Advanced. This is a course for EA professionals including trainers, practitioners, development planners, business groups, conservation community, decision-makers, donor agencies and economists.
Prerequisites: Participants should have basic understanding of the ecological concepts and sustainability principles.
Language: English
Duration: 2 days (9-10 May)
Price: US$475
Min/Max: 10-30

Asha Rajvanshi, Ph.D., Senior Professor and Head, Wildlife Institute of India (India)

Vinod.B. Mathur, Ph.D., Director, Wildlife Institute of India (India)


Dr. Asha Rajvanshi
Dr. Asha Rajvanshi has a doctorate in Environmental Science. She is a member and faculty of the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) for last 28 years. She heads the EIA Cell of the Institute. In her capacity as an EIA practitioner, she has led several EIA studies to assess the impacts of development projects in key sectors. As a trainer, she has been actively involved in national and global capacity building initiatives. She has effectively contributed to the development of learning resources and guidance manuals for mainstreaming biodiversity in impact assessment. These are becoming increasingly popular as tools for professionalizing EIA in south Asia. Asha's professional experience is also being sought in advisory support to Govt. of India and other professional bodies. She is a member of the Environment Committee, Indian Road Congress and member of Accreditation Committee of the Quality Council of India for Accreditation of EIA consulting organizations. Asha is a member of the International Association for Impact Assessment, USA and has served as the Co-Chair of its Biodiversity Section for five years. Asha presented IAIA's pre-conference training courses in Boston (USA), Stavanger (Norway), Seoul (Korea), Perth (Australia), Accra (Ghana), Geneva (Switzerland), Puebla (Mexico), Porto (Portugal), Calgary (Canada) and Florence (Italy) from 2005 to 2015. Asha is nominated as an expert for the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) for regional/sub-regional assessments on biodiversity and ecosystem services for Asia and Pacific region.

Dr. Vinod.B. Mathur

Dr. Vinod Mathur holds a Masters' degree in Forestry and a doctorate in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Oxford. As a faculty member of the Wildlife Institute of India, he has been actively involved in conducting training and research in the field of natural resource conservation for the last 28 years. He has also worked as a FAO International Training and Protected Area Planning Consultant in Sri Lanka. He has been responsible for the planning, organization and conduct of training programs for various target groups. Dr. Mathur also has vast experience of conducting environmental assessments and developing mitigation plans for safeguarding critical biodiversity resources. He is also a member of the Environmental Appraisal Committee (EAC) of the Government of India for the Coal and Thermal power projects. He is the Deputy Regional Vice Chair, the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA)-Asia and member of the IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management (CEM). Dr. Mathur is an IAIA member and is actively involved in the CBBIA project of IAIA. As an initiative of CBBIA project of IAIA, Dr.Mathur co-presented the IAIA's pre conference training courses jointly with Dr. Asha Rajvanshi in Boston (USA), Stavanger (Norway), Seoul (Korea), Perth (Australia), Accra (Ghana), Geneva (Switzerland), Puebla (Mexico), Porto (Portugal), Calgary (Canada) and Florence (Italy)  from 2005 to 2015. He is member of the United Nations Inter-governmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (UN-IPBES) Multidisciplinary Expert Panel (MEP).