The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation began funding Conservation International (CI) in 2001. The initial commitment provided support for field activities and the creation of innovative programs, such as the Global Conservation Fund, the Center for Applied Biodiversity Science, and the Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring network. Additionally, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation supported CI’s work in Marine Management Area Science and large-scale action plans in key biodiversity hotspots. CI field work supported by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has focused primarily in South America, Melanesia, and Madagascar.
The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation is supporting CI in the fundamental shift it has recently taken in its approach to conservation, highlighted in its new mission statement: “Building upon a strong foundation of science, partnership and field demonstration, CI empowers societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature, our global biodiversity, for the well-being of humanity.” To enable the pursuit of this important mission, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has restructured its support to CI to focus on CI’s comprehensive approach of “Building Green Economies.”
CI aims to integrate the value of healthy ecosystems and their services into economic development by becoming a trusted advisor to governments and other key development decision-makers. CI’s niche centers on demonstrating “nature’s role” in shaping sustainable development by providing science about natural ecosystems, filling the gap of nonexistent robust examples, and helping decision-makers to account for nature’s role in securing a fully-functioning, integrated green economy. Given the rate of global development and the ensuing pace of ecological damage, CI will fill an immediate and urgent need to produce models suitable for replication and amplification. CI pursues demonstration and amplification of green economies at multiple scales, levels, and sectors of development activity in influential places throughout the world. Field demonstrations are selected for their potential to impact the global development process and to demonstrate the concrete linkages between nature and human well-being.
CI is enhancing its strong science basis, previously centered on biodiversity, to develop the social, economic, and natural science cases that build understanding of how human well-being is provided by and can be sustained through healthy natural ecosystems. The Science and Knowledge division leads CI’s focus through six securities provided by nature: climate, water, food, health, cultural services, and species contributions.