Formerly the Grand Challenges in Ecosystems and the Environment Initiative, the Georgina Mace Centre for the Living Planet brings together a multidisciplinary group of researchers to tackle some of the greatest environmental challenges
"Planet Earth is facing unprecedented environmental challenges due to human expansion - the Georgina Mace Centre for the Living Planet hopes to contribute some science-based solutions to mitigate those effects for a sustainable development." - Professor Vincent Savolainen
Many challenges facing human society depend on the interaction between ecological systems, the environment and human wellbeing. Yet our current understanding of these complex systems is mostly insufficient for science-based intervention.
Based at Silwood Park, but with members from across Imperial College London, the UK and the world, this new Centre brings together a multidisciplinary group of researchers to tackle some of the greatest environmental challenges facing the world.
The Georgina Mace Centre for the Living Planet aims to serve as an international hub to initiate and bring together leaders in fields such as the natural and social sciences, engineering and economics with policy makers and other stakeholders, to work on integrated research programmes that have real-time impacts on conservation and the environment.
This new Centre is named after Dame Georgina Mace FRS. Dame Georgina was one the most prominent ecologists and conservation biologists of all times. In 2000, she was the Director of the Institute of Zoology in London, until she moved to Imperial College London in 2006 as Professor of Conservation Science; she left Imperial for University College London in 2012.
She contributed to an astonishing range of scientific projects, global committees, and leadership roles. She pioneered the development of universal criteria for listing the world’s threatened species in the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red list, which led to the global signatories to the United Nations (UN) Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 2002 to commit to substantially reducing the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010.
She led the UN Millennium Ecosystem Assessment in 2005 and showed the alarming degradation of our planet. In 2012, in the UK, she founded The Natural Capital Committee, directly advising the UK government and leading in 2018 to an ambitious national 25 Year Environment Plan to ensure sustainable development.
Sadly, Dame Georgina died on 19 September 2020 at the age of 67. Imperial paid tribute to Georgina Mace; she was a much loved and respected colleague, and unanimously we are all delighted here to be able to cherish her memory with this new Centre.
The Georgina Mace Centre for the Living Planet is a global hub for addressing key environmental challenges for humanity, carrying out internationally excellent science with a focus on finding solutions to these challenges in a collaborative manner, and acting as an interface between science, practitioners and policy makers.
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Explore some of our projects and see what an impact they are having in the real world
Setting the standard
Setting standards for studies in the interface between biodiversity and climate change
A DNA-based system for species identification
The importance of species interactions in ecosystem functioning
Using social and ecological data to control infectious diseases
Using ecological, economic and mathematical tools to change the ways in which decisions are made in conservation
Map of life
Tracking the distribution of species in a changing world