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Megafauna Symposium 4–5 may 2020

Up-scaling megafauna restoration for global biodiversity and climate gains  

Up-scaling megafauna restoration for global biodiversity and climate gains

two day symposium. May 4-5, 2020

MegaPast2Future research group, Center for Biodiversity Dynamics in a Changing World (BIOCHANGE), Section for Ecoinformatics and Biodiversity (ECOINF), Aarhus University, Denmark

Download SCHEDULE here

With an increasing recognition of the necessity to address the climate, biodiversity and global inequality crises, maintaining a livable planet for humans and non-humans calls for the development of new instruments in ecosystem management and restoration. Megafauna coevolved within extant ecological communities and their extinction and range contractions led to the loss of the important ecosystem services they provided, which has been identified as a key driver of current biodiversity losses. Promoting high biodiversity itself has a strong potential as a nature-based solution to mitigate climate change, notably by promoting carbon storage. Given this knowledge, megafauna restorations could assist in achieving biodiversity and climate targets by restoring lost ecological processes, e.g., as part of rewilding. While current restorations have, by necessity, occurred at relatively small spatial scales, upscaling restoration efforts is now needed for megafauna-based rewilding to have any major impact on global biosphere functions. At the same time, a consideration of the societal implications of this strategy is necessary to understand the challenges associated with megafauna restoration, including for governance and human-wildlife coexistence.

The symposium will gather a diverse group of experts from the fields of megafauna restoration, macro-ecology, climate science and human-wildlife coexistence to address key questions regarding upscaling of megafauna restoration for global biodiversity and climate gains.


More info about the hosting lab: Ecoinformatics-and-Biodiversity and our megafauna research



Jens-Christian Svenning

Aarhus University



Silvia Ceauşu

University of Southampton

Ana Rodrigues

Montpellier University

Hanna L. Tuomisto

University of Helsinki

Brian Enquist

University of Arizona

Steven Higgins

University of Bayreuth

Jeppe Aagaard Kristensen

GEUS, Aarhus University

Tobias Kuemmerle

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Jamie Lorimer

University of Oxford

Yadvinder Malhi

University of Oxford



Christopher Gordon

Robert Buitenwerf

Scott Jarvie

Wang Li

Sophie Monsarrat

Susanne Vogel