2016: an eventful year for SULi

CEESP News - 

By Dr Rosie Cooney, SULi Chair and Dr Rebecca Cross, SULi Programme Office

2016 was a very eventful year for the IUCN Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group (SULi) members, who attended - in force - key international meetings to forward the ever-increasing imperative to conserve wildlife while positively impacting local livelihoods via sustainable-use. 


Collaborative Partnership for Wildlife event at the IUCN WCC, Hawai'i, in September 2016. Eight partner organizations took part, including (from L to R): Braulio de Souza Dias, CBD Executive Secretary; Johannes Refisch UNEP; Bradnee Chambers, Convention on Migratory Species Executive Secretary; Ali Kaka, CIC; Caroline Sorensen, CIC; Terry Sunderland, CIFOR; Anastasiya Timoshyna, TRAFFIC; and Lucy Mulenkei, IIFB. The panel was moderated by Rosie Cooney, SULi Chair. Image credit: CIC International.

At the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Hawai'i in September, SULi led and/or participated in a whole array of events.  Key workshops which were co-convened by SULi include, "From marsh to medicine, from forest to handbag: how can we improve livelihood benefits from high value wildlife trade chains?" and "Does Trophy Hunting Have a Future? Hunting, conservation and livelihoods in a changing world”.  SULi co-led a number of Knowledge Cafes including one on “Integrating traditional knowledge into species conservation status assessments”.  For summaries of these events please click here.  SULi also held a meeting after the WCC which was attended by 30+ members to discuss and refine SULi’s strategic plan for the next quadrennium (a report from this meeting is in development and will be available on our website). 

At the CITES 17th Conference of the Parties in September there were over 30 SULi members present and engaged in following and contributing to a wide range of issues. SULi also co-convened the first "Community Voices at CITES" event in the middle of the CoP with ResourceAfrica, UNEP and IIED.   This event aimed to provide a platform for rural communities’ to share their perspectives on wildlife conservation (read the report here).  SULi was also present at a workshop on "CITES and Livelihoods" convened by the CITES Secretariat and the Department of Environmental Affairs, South Africa, which took place in George, South Africa, in late November. 

SULi progressed with the Beyond Enforcement initiative by co-hosting two regional workshops on combating wildlife crime by involving Indigenous peoples and local communities.  The first of these focussed on West and Central Africa and was held in Limbe, Cameroon from 24th-25th of February with IUCN PACO, IIED, TRAFFIC and NESDA (read the workshop report here).  In follow-up, a second regional workshop was held in Hanoi, Viet Nam from 15th-16th November with IUCN Asia, IIED, TRAFFIC and ICCA.  Regional experiences and case studies from across a number of Asian countries, with an emphasis on the Lower Mekong Region, were shared and examined (read more on this event here).  Two recently out publications from the ‘Beyond Enforcement’ work are also available open access, “From Poachers to Protectors: Engaging Local Communities in Solutions to Illegal Wildlife Trade” and “Developing a theory of change for a community-based response to illegal wildlife trade”.

Directly after the South-East Asia Beyond Enforcement workshop, the Hanoi intergovernmental Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade was held in Hanoi, Viet Nam. SULi was active both in the formal programme and running a side-event focused on Communities and IWT, bringing several speakers from the workshop to present. 

At the Convention on Biological Diversity CoP in Cancun, Mexico in December a number of SULi members attended and followed relevant items, and SULi participated for IUCN in a meeting of the Collaborative Partnership on Wildlife (read more about the CPW). 

Of particular note, in 2016 a SULi-led briefing paper on Trophy Hunting was published to inform discussions in the EU around import restrictions on hunting trophies.

2017 is already shaping up to be an exciting year for SULi so please follow us on facebook, twitter and visit our website.

Dr Rosie Cooney (SULi Chair) with colleagues at the Beyond Enforcement workshop held in Hanoi, Viet Nam November 2016

Dr Rosie Cooney (SULi Chair) with colleagues at the Beyond Enforcement workshop held in Hanoi, Viet Nam 

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