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Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge edited by Sarah A. Laird

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Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge: Equitable Partnerships in Practice,

edited by Sarah A. Laird

Earthscan 2002


Biodiversity research and prospecting are long-standing activities taking place in a new legal and ethical environment. Following entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1993, and other recent policy developments, expectations and obligations for research and prospecting partnerships have changed. However, to date there are few guides to integrating these concepts with practice.

This book offers practical guidance on how to arrive at equitable biodiversity research and prospecting partnerships. Drawing on experience and lessons learned from around the world, it provides case studies, analysis and recommendations in a range of areas that together form a new framework for creating equity in these partnerships. They include researcher codes of ethics, institutional policies, community research agreements, the design of more effective commercial partnerships and biodiversity prospecting contracts, the drafting and implementation of national 'access and benefit-sharing' laws, and institutional tools for the distribution of financial benefits.

As part of the People and Plants initiative to enhance the role of communities in efforts to conserve biodiversity and use natural resources sustainably, "Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge" will be invaluable to students, researchers and local communities, academic institutions, international agencies, government bodies and companies involved in biodiversity research, prospecting and conservation.


Sarah Laird is an independent consultant with a focus on the commercial and cultural context of biodiversity and forest conservation. She is author and editor of numerous publications incluing The Commercial use of Biodiversity and Tapping the Green Market.

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