International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence

August 19, 2019

The IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) Human-Wildlife Conflict Task Force, the GEF-funded Global Wildlife Program, and the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at Oxford University’s Department of Zoology are co-hosting an International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence in Oxford, UK, 1st – 3rd April 2020.

Human-wildlife conflict is one of the most pressing threats to biodiversity conservation and achievement of sustainable development.  It occurs when animals pose a direct and recurring threat to the livelihood or safety of people, often leading to the persecution of that species, and to clashes among different groups of people about what should be done to resolve the situation.

These conflicts threaten the healthy co-existence of people and wildlife and undermine wider conservation efforts. Collaboration across disciplines, sectors, and academic and non-academic actors is needed in this to address human-wildlife conflicts world-wide.

The International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence will aim to:

  • – Facilitate dialogue and peer-to-peer learning across sectors and actors on the topic for partnerships and collaboration across people and institutions working on human-wildlife conflict.
  • – Generate interdisciplinary and shared understanding of the latest insights, technologies, methods, ideas, and information for field of human-wildlife conflict, coexistence and interactions.
  • – Mainstream human-wildlife conflict as one of the top global priorities in biodiversity conservation and the Sustainable Development Goals for the next decade, catalysing opportunities for working together on national, regional or global policies and initiatives.
  • – Identify and develop a collective way forward for addressing knowledge and implementation gaps for effective efforts to reduce and manage human-wildlife conflict.


Dr Alexandra Zimmermann, Chair of the IUCN SSC Human-Wildlife Conflict Task Force says “this conference is a truly unique opportunity: for the first time at such a large scale, we are bringing together representatives from governments, NGOs, inter-governmental organisations, academic institutions, and indigenous and local communities, to work together towards effective solutions for human-wildlife conflict management worldwide.”

It will be an interdisciplinary event, actively seeking participation from presenters and discussants from fields such as ecology, animal behaviour, psychology, law, conflict analysis, mediation, peacebuilding, international development, economics, anthropology and others, to understand human-wildlife conflict through various viewpoints, learn from each other, and build new links and collaborations.

Professor David Macdonald, Director of the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at the University of Oxford, says “it might take two to tango, but resolving human-wildlife conflict generally involves taking account of many more than two viewpoints, and at the cutting edge we realise it takes expertise from many disciplines. That is why this conference will be deeply cross-cutting, integrating research, practical advice and ideas from a diversity of insights and experiences”.