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Big Data & biodiversity conservation: assessing the impact of biodiversity knowledge accumulation on conservation planning


The planet has undergone rapid changes and the resulting anthropogenic activities have caused loss of biodiversity at an unprecedented rate, including species yet unknown to science. Although this problem has been recognized in international agreements designed to conserving biodiversity, global conservation strategies that incorporate the unknown species within their objectives are virtually non-existent, which could compromise their effectiveness in the long term. This project aims to assess whether current conservation strategies designed at the level of species, regions, and nations will remain effective in the future as our knowledge on species diversity progressively expand. We will use information on species extinction risk and discovery probability to identify major threats to yet unknown species. Next, we will use historical databases on known species and anthropogenic factors to assess whether biodiversity prioritization strategies show temporal instability due to descriptions of new species. We will also feed time-to-event models with databases on published species descriptions to identify depositary institutions housing specimens with higher chances of representing yet unknown species. An additional investigation will quantify taxonomist specialization among tetrapod clades besides revealing potential drivers of taxonomist loss. The results of this project will allow for the publication of scientific articles in high-profile journals, provide human-resource training on big data and biodiversity conservation, including undergraduate and graduate students, and potentially increasing the outreach and public engagement in biodiversity conservation science. Broader impacts include the potential development of new environmental policies at national and international level, as well as the provision of guidance for initiatives to support, logistically or financially, those activities that maximize discovery and protection of species yet unknown to science. (AU)

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Scientific publications (4)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
CARVALHO, RAQUEL L.; RESENDE, ANGELICA F.; BARLOW, JOS; FRANCA, FILIPE M.; MOURA, MARIO R.; MACIEL, RAFAELLA; ALVES-MARTINS, FERNANDA; SHUTT, JACK; NUNES, CASSIO A.; ELIAS, FERNANDO; et al. Pervasive gaps in Amazonian ecological research. Current Biology, v. 33, n. 16, p. 15-pg., . (19/24049-5, 22/12231-6, 21/11840-6, 22/07381-9, 12/51872-5, 19/25478-7)
MOURA, MARIO R.; DO NASCIMENTO, FELLIPE A. O.; PAOLUCCI, LUCAS N.; SILVA, DANIEL P.; SANTOS, BRAULIO A.. Pervasive impacts of climate change on the woodiness and ecological generalism of dry forest plant assemblages. JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY, v. 111, n. 8, p. 15-pg., . (22/12231-6, 21/11840-6)
GUEDES, JHONNY J. M.; MOURA, MARIO R.; DINIZ-FILHO, JOSE ALEXANDRE F.. Species out of sight: elucidating the determinants of research effort in global reptiles. ECOGRAPHY, v. 2023, n. 3, p. 14-pg., . (22/12231-6, 21/11840-6)
JESUS, LETIZIA M. G.; GUEDES, JHONNY J. M.; MOURA, MARIO R.; FEIO, RENATO N.; COSTA, HENRIQUE C.. Environmental drivers of tropical forest snake phenology: Insights from citizen science. ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION, v. 13, n. 7, p. 11-pg., . (22/12231-6, 21/11840-6)

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