GWP NEWSLETTER | December 2023

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Dear GWP Friends and Colleagues,

The GWP is buzzing with energy after the November 2023 Annual Conference in Bangkok, co-hosted with the Thai Department of National Parks, Wildlife, and Plant Conservation; UNDP; and IUCN. It was our first to include countries participating in the new GEF-8 phase of the GWP and brought together 140 participants from GWP countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean, along with GWP partners and supporting GEF Agencies. 

As the GWP grows, so does the logo! During the conference, a new logo was introduced. The addition of people to the logo recognizes the important role of the communities we work with. They are foundational to the link between wildlife conservation and development, and to the GWP's long-term success.

In the rest of this newsletter, you will find resources from the GWP and partners, and opportunities to add skills through expert-led webinars. The GWP hosted a webinar on countering corruption in wildlife trade and conservation and, as part of raising awareness for International Anti-Corruption Day on December 6th, the UNDP-GEF-USAID Project "Reducing Maritime Trafficking of Wildlife between Africa and Asia" recently produced two videos. One, on their work combating illegal wildlife trade through ports, highlights the importance of identifying networks for illegal wildlife trade. The second summarizes work on capacity building in controlled delivery investigations and how this approach improves investigators' ability to identify and target translational criminal organizations.

We wish you all the best in the new year!

Warm regards,

The GWP Coordination Team

World Bank

GWP Updates and Resources

Introducing the new GWP logo!

Building on the existing logo, the new GWP logo includes a more forward-facing inclusion of people and development. The new logo also reflects the integration of the GEF-8 Wildlife Conservation for Development Integrated Program into the GWP community. Moving forward, the broader program, including GEF-8 projects, will be collectively known as the GWP. This helps us maximize knowledge transfer across GEF phases and scale up the impacts of the GWP for development.

The 2023 Global Wildlife Program Annual Conference

The annual conference is an important part of our program because it brings projects together to share practical lessons, promotes knowledge exchange and facilitates the networking that makes it possible for projects to learn from each other. This year's annual conference in Thailand included a mix of interactive thematic discussions, breakout groups, panel discussions and networking opportunities that enabled GWP project teams to share their challenges, learn about new solutions and offer ideas for collaboration and partnership.

Attendees also had a special opportunity to see Thailand's good practices and experiences in wildlife conservation. During a site visit to Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex, a planned project site under Thailand's GEF-8 project, attendees heard about Thailand's strategies for tiger conservation and saw first-hand how SMART patrolling and camera traps are being used to combat poaching. Read a summary of the meeting here.

New brief is a call to action for the effective management of human-wildlife conflict

Human-wildlife conflict is one of the most pressing issues facing biodiversity conservation and development and a topic of increasing political attention. The GWP carried out a global survey of human-wildlife conflict perceptions and a desktop review of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) to assess whether they mentioned human-wildlife conflict and, if so, in what context. According to the survey, 73% of government respondents perceive human-wildlife conflict as an increasing concern, while only 23% perceive it as sufficiently addressed and well managed. Take a look at the brief to see the high-level results.

Guidance Note: Lessons Learned in Conservation Technology

This guidance note illustrates the experiences and top tips on the use of technology in wildlife conservation emerging across the GWP. Based on the collective input from project teams during a virtual knowledge exchange in March 2023, the guidance note offers insights into data collection, processing, management and sharing to help programs make smarter decisions about technology use. 

Learn more about conservation technology trends in this State of Conservation Technology 3-year trend report from WILDLABS. 

Knowledge Exchange: Social Research for Conservation Insight and Impact Evaluation

This was the second workshop in a series of knowledge exchanges convened by TRAFFIC to enable GWP countries to bring behavior change more effectively into their projects. The workshop introduced social research, a tool increasingly important for conservation, which should be applied at the onset of conservation planning. Read the summary to learn about a simple, five-stage process for social research with practical examples. 

The role of media and its impact on human-wildlife conflict perceptions

The GWP organized two workshops with the aim of exploring the crucial yet often ignored role that the media can play in mitigating human-wildlife conflict.  The workshops enabled participants to understand why and how to engage with media through a successful case study on human-leopard conflict in India.

What's new from GWP projects and partners

UNDP: Combating Wildlife Crime Through


This case study, completed by UNDP and WildAid under the GEF-USAID financed GWP project “Reducing Maritime Trafficking of Wildlife Between Africa and Asia”, discusses the importance of effective messaging, strategic messengers, and visual identity to deliver impactful campaign materials. Based on the experience of the ‘Join Our Team! Defend Our Wildlife’ campaign, the study contains key lessons and practical recommendations for stakeholders who are planning similar initiatives. 

IUCN: A Guide to Expanding Protected & Conserved Areas Under the UN Global Biodiversity Framework

This paper provides six principles that guide governments to achieve a high-quality protected area network, providing the best chance of halting and reversing biodiversity loss while upholding the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities. 

2023 Asia Environmental Enforcement Awards

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s Asia Environmental Enforcement Awards! Individuals and teams from China, India, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Tanzania were recognized for their work combating transboundary environmental crime. Winners were announced at a ceremony held during the recent GWP annual conference. 

The winners of the Asia Environmental Enforcement Awards were celebrated during the Global Wildlife Program annual conference in Bangkok, Thailand.

Measuring nature's worth:

the Zimbabwe Biodiversity Economy Report

In September, the first-ever Zimbabwe Biodiversity Economy (ZBE) Report was launched. Recognizing that there are many economic benefits from Zimbabwe’s rich biodiversity but no framework to measure and track their contributions to economic development, the Ministry of Environment, with support from the African Wildlife Foundation, set out to create this overview of the country’s biodiversity economy. The result is a tool that can be used to mainstream the contribution of nature into development planning, policy development and decision-making on public and private sector investment. 

Read about the launch

Read the full report  

Read briefs about wildlife, bioprospecting and biotrade, forestry and fisheries


Integrated Land Use Initiatives: Theory and Practice

In this two-part online course developed by the World Bank, decision makers will learn how to balance economic, environmental and social considerations within a landscape. It is designed to help sustainability practitioners learn how to deal with the complex problems posed by the conflicting demands of different sets of groups and set priorities and boundaries.  Flyer | Register


Countering corruption in wildlife trade and conservation

Conservation and counter-wildlife trafficking initiatives are at a crucial crossroads. While the preservation of our biodiversity and natural heritage depends on the success of these endeavors, there has been reluctance to recognize anti-corruption measures as prerequisites in these efforts. Effective counter-corruption action necessitates collective efforts from governments, civil society, law enforcement, and international organizations.  

This one-hour GWP webinar shed light on the multifaceted challenges of this form of corruption and highlights field experiences, success stories, tools, and valuable lessons in addressing it.  

Watch | Presentation  

Learn more about approaches to tackling illegal wildlife trade in these videos from the UNDP-GEF-USAID project “Reducing Maritime Trafficking of Wildlife between Africa and Asia” about combating illegal wildlife trade (IWT) through ports, capacity building in controlled delivery investigations, how customs companies in the East African Community are securing their supply chains against exploitation and trafficking, and how financial investigative techniques are helping track and prosecute IWT intermediaries and kingpins.  

Other past GWP webinars can be found here.

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