Aichi Biodiversity Target 1 of the United Nations Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011–2020 states that "by 2020, at the latest, people are aware of the values of biodiversity and the steps they can take to conserve and use it sustainably". As a contribution to achieve this target, and to effectively complement existing educational materials, WAZA developed tools for raising awareness about biodiversity in zoo and aquarium visitors worldwide. These tools focus on global issues and personal action.
This campaign was accompanied by a global evaluation of biodiversity understanding and knowledge of actions to help protect biodiversity in zoo and aquarium visitors, also to measure the effectiveness of the tools developed for awareness-raising. Such a large-scale evaluation of the educational impacts of zoos and aquariums is entirely lacking and also needed by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) for evaluating Aichi Biodiversity Target 1.
A survey was conducted between 2012 and 2015 with more than 10,000 visitors to 31 WAZA member organisations from 20 countries around the globe to evaluate biodiversity literacy. The survey was done under the auspices of WAZA, in collaboration with researchers at Chester Zoo and the University of Warwick. Please click on the following link to download a report (3 MB) on the results of the visitor survey (referred to in Nature and published in Conservation Biology, Conservation Letters and Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment).
If you have any questions about the visitor survey, please contact us. Please click on the following link to download an article (1 MB) about how zoos and aquariums contribute to achieving Aichi Biodiversity Target 1.