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   Location:Home > Research > Research Divisions > Center for Integrative Conservation
Center for Integrative Conservation
Author: Richard Corlett
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Update time: 2015-07-10
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What is the Center for Integrative Conservation?
The Center for Integrative Conservation at the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yunnan, is a new group led by Richard Corlett, bringing together existing staff working on biological conservation at XTBG as well as recruiting new staff at all levels.
What is Integrative Conservation?
A dictionary definition of the word integrative is ‘combining and coordinating diverse elements into a whole’.Integrative Conservation therefore aims to combine and coordinatethe diverse elements of biological conservation into an effective tool for protecting species and ecosystems. These elements include traditional ecological field studies, biogeography and systematics, remote sensing, molecular genetics and metagenomics, mathematical modelling, and environmental education.
Who is in the Center?
Currently, the Center includes: Professor Zhu Hua, who works on the taxonomy and geography of flowering plants; Professor GaoJiangyun, an expert on the biology and conservation of orchids; Professor Ferry Slik, who works on regional and global plant geography, as well as local conservation issues; Professor QuanRuichang, an expert on the highly endangered snub-nosed monkeys, who also works on bird communities in fragmented forests; Associate Professor Michael Mcleish, who works on plant-insect relationships and population genetics; Dr Wang Bo, who specializes in seed predation and dispersal by rodents; Dr Zhang Mingxia, previously with WCS, who will work on bird communities and their conservation; Dr Wen Bin, who runs the XTBG seed bank and conducts research into the storage of recalcitrant and intermediate seeds; Dr Mareike Roeder, who works on the phylogenetic structure of liana communities; plus the staff of the Herbarium, under Mr Yin Jiantao, and the seed bank, under Dr Wen Bin; Professor Li Jie, who works on the plant phylogenetics; Associate Professor Li Qiaoming, who works on conservation genetics;There more doctors and assistant researchers in our center, such as Dr Cao lin of Quan Ruichang’s group, who also do seed dispersal by rodents; Four assistant researcher in Gao Jiangyun’ group,: Mr Zhou Xiang (staff as doctor candidate) and Mrs Fan Xuli (master degree), Mr Liu Qiang  (master degree) and Dr Shao shicheng, do orchid related work. Mrs Yu Fei, as an assistant researcher and doctor candidate in Ferry’group, Mr Li Lang, as an assistant researcher and Mrs Ci Xiuqin as a experimentalist in Li jie’s group.
 
Why does XTBG need a Center for Integrative Conservation?
Conservation has been a major focus for XTBG throughout its 53-year history, but the recent transformation of much of the natural forest in the vicinity of the Gardens into monoculture rubber plantations has highlighted the urgency of conservation action in one of China’s major biodiversity hotspots. XTBG is currently better known for its research in forest ecology and plant resource sciences, but it is intended that the Center will give conservation science a similar influence and reputation. The Center will also support the expansion of existing efforts in environmental education.
What projects is the Center involved in currently?
Many people joined the Center with on-going projects, so the current activities are very diverse, ranging from frugivory and seed dispersal to seed science and primate biology. The major new initiative is the ‘Zero Extinction Project’, which aims to prevent extinctions in Xishuangbanna’s diverse native flora by assessing conservation needs, identifying forest fragments worthy of protection, and targeting the Garden’s ex situ collections (in the seed bank and living collections) at the species most needing attention.
 
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Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Menglun, Mengla, Yunnan 666303, China
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