The Business of Conservation Conference
The Business of Conservation of Conference is an annual gathering that brings together global technologists, leaders of conservation businesses, investors, entrepreneurs, Heads of state, students in the conservation space and many other key attendees all with the goal of advancing wildlife conservation. This year 2023 the Business of Conservation Conference took place in Kigali city, Rwanda and was organized by the African Leadership University School of Wildlife Conservation in partnership with the Rwanda Development Board (RDB).
The ALU School of Conservation is located in Bumbogo, Kigali Innovation City and the school is dedicated to raising a new generation of leaders in Africa that are committed to advancing conservation efforts and building resilient wildlife economies. The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) is a government department body that merges all key government agencies in Rwanda and has place a major role in wildlife conservation in Africa.
The conference is a great opportunity for people across the world who are passionate about wildlife conservation to attend. The conference is however not limited to only those passionate about wildlife conservation, the Business of Conservation conference is a good avenue for people across the world to learn about conservation because conservation of wildlife in Africa and across the world should be a business that concerns us all.
The Business of Conservation conference always has powerful and engaging panels that tackle the need for building and advancing conservation in Africa as a whole. One might ask why do we need to conserve wildlife in Africa? Well the presence of conferences such as the Business of Conservation Conference is an indicator that wildlife is endangered and has the possibility of being endangered which means that wildlife deserves protection and people especially the local communities neighboring national parks and game reserves need to be educated about the importance of conserving wildlife. A number of wildlife species are endangered across the world and some have even been added the International Union for Conservation (IUCN) Red List for example the golden monkeys and the mountain gorillas. Therefore the work of wildlife conservation is ongoing and there is still a lot that Africa as a continent has to do in advancing efforts in line with conservation. This goes without saying that African through their tourism boards and other government agencies have done commendable work in the area of conservation. Government and Tourism agencies like the Rwanda Development Board, The Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA), Magical Kenya, Tanzania Tourist Board, South African Tourism Board, Namibia Tourism Board, Botswana Tourism Organization and many others across the continent.
The Business of Conservation
The conference took place on 29th-31st August 2023 and several crucial topics were discussed. Session topics included the topic of “Bringing women to the table in the conservation industry ” and this session was headlined by Danai Gurira an artistic director at Almasi Arts and the founder of Love our Girls. Other topics at the conference included the importance of involving communities in building sustainable wildlife communities and a one Dr.Shylock Munyengwa was quoted saying that “If you don’t prioritize communities, it will never work. Communities are the first line of defense.”
The Business of Conservation Conference also had networking sessions between attendees,cocktail events that involved networking and traditional dances from cultural dance groups in Rwanda.
Courtesy Photo by Rwanda Development Board
What does the Business of Conservation
Conference do for Wildlife Conservation
in Africa ?
The conference creates a platform for advancing education on the importance of conserving wildlife hence elevating the conservation efforts globally. The conference is also an opportunity for attendees to learn more about conservation and pick up actionable ways with which they can use to participate in conservation in their various sectors of work or existence.
The Business of Conservation Conference is an avenue for collaboration for different stake holders like entrepreneurs, conservation bodies, individuals in academia, philanthropists and government representatives. Collaboration is the way to go for wildlife conservation as conservation is known to be a collective effort, it cannot be a one man only effort. Like the isiZulu saying ““Izandla ziyagezana” which translates as hands wash each other which emphasizes the benefit of working together to achieve a goal.
The Business of conservation conference also attracts investors from across the world who invest money in causes leading to advancing wildlife conservation. As with any other thing wildlife conservation needs and requires financial investment in order to achieve progress.