CEBC - A Background
Rationale: why establish the CEBC?
The conservation of biodiversity increasingly involves making decisions on appropriate management and policy actions, from a wide range of potential options. Despite the growing amount of scientific information produced by the research community, conservation practice and policy remain largely experience-based with limited evaluation of what works and what does not. The main contributory reason is the poor accessibility of evidence on the effectiveness of different interventions; the provision and delivery of scientific evidence is not tailored to the user-community. This needs to be addressed in order to develop an evidence-based framework to support decision-making.
This fundamental problem of evidence accessibility can be addressed through the use of systematic reviews and evidence mapping, together with the active dissemination of subsequent findings from an independent, unbiased source. Findings are in the form of management/policy implications, based on the quality of evidence and the cost-utility of the intervention. The idea is to inform decision-making. Globally, there are now many centres undertaking systematic reviews of evidence relating to other decision-making disciplines, such as social policy, education policy, health care policy and health care practice. The CEBC is the first in the field of conservation and environmental management. There are now four centres in the CEE network.
Function: what is the role of the CEBC?
The objectives of the CEBC are to conduct research and provide training on evidence synthesis and dissemination in environmental management. The Centre aims to investigate the effectiveness of a full range of environmental interventions, from practical site management to national and international policy. In addition, the CEBC seeks to provide training in conducting, interpreting and utilising the results of evidence syntheses.
Co-ordinating centre for the Collaboration for Environmental Evidence (CEE)
CEBC currently acts as the global co-ordinating centre for the function of the CEE. CEBC maintains the administrative functions of CEE, the website, Library of Systematic Reviews and acts as the Editorial Office of the CEE journal Environmental Evidence. CEE commissions CEBC to run systematic review training courses, and asks CEBC to help with the peer-reviewing process of the manuscripts submitted to the Library.