CIFOR–ICRAF publishes over 750 publications every year on agroforestry, forests and climate change, landscape restoration, rights, forest policy and much more – in multiple languages.

CIFOR–ICRAF addresses local challenges and opportunities while providing solutions to global problems for forests, landscapes, people and the planet.

We deliver actionable evidence and solutions to transform how land is used and how food is produced: conserving and restoring ecosystems, responding to the global climate, malnutrition, biodiversity and desertification crises. In short, improving people’s lives.

Towards more rigorous assessment of biodiversity

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Biodiversity is often ill-defined and subjectively surveyed, resulting in inefficient and ambiguos estimates. Strengths and deficiencies of prevailing survey techniques are appraised through a review of selected literature. Analogies with forest inventory are used to suggest options for more efficient and rigorous biodiversity assessment. Techniques such as variable-probability and model-based sampling, especially when used in conjuction with generalised linear modelling, offer efficient alternatives to more traditional assessment based on quadrats and nested plots. Bayesian methods offer scope to combine expert and local knowledge with formal samples, and warrant further investigation. Suggestion for further research are given.
    Publication year



    Vanclay, J.K.




    assessment, biodiversity

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