5th Meeting of the UK Biodiversity Indicators Forum

The fifth UK Biodiversity Indicators Forum (BIF5) was organised by JNCC and Defra, and was held on Tuesday 8 March 2011 at the Defra Offices, Nobel House, London.
The objectives of the meeting were:
  • to discuss the quality and relevance of the UK Biodiversity indicators in the light of the adoption of new global and European 2020 targets and
  • generate options for the development and refinement of the indicator set.


To consider the objectives, background documentation included:

  1. a data quality assessment of the currently existing indicator set. This assessment provided scores for each existing indicator against a set of criteria, including precision of the data and future data security. The score for each criterion ranged from 1 (low) up to 3 (high).Total scores for each indicator provided a very simple assessment of the indicator’s quality.
  2. a gap analysis, which considered how well the existing UK indicator set covers new reporting commitments, by mapping the UK indicators against the 20 targets for 2020 which were agreed at the tenth Conference of the Parties (COP 10) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), held in Nagoya in October 2010. In addition, the document included preliminary work to link this information with the current European indicators, and targets from the emerging European Biodiversity Strategy, and with the most recent indicators available for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Please note that this document was updated following the Forum, in June 2011, to take into account the finalised version of the European Biodiversity Strategy, launched in early May, and comments received from attendees at the meeting about country-level indicators.

In order to focus the outcomes of the meeting, just a selection of specific areas identified as requiring development were identified to be discussed further.

Firstly, several presentations were given to provide background to the 2020 targets and the forum, and to open discussions around ecosystem service indicators:

(1) ‘International context: CBD CoP10 and the EU Biodiversity Strategy’ (Andrew Stott, Defra).

(2) ‘UK Biodiversity Indicators: Preliminary Assessment’ (Mark Stevenson, Defra, and James Williams, JNCC).

(3) ‘Ecosystem Service Indicators’ (Matt Walpole, WCMC). 

For the summary documents and copies of the presentations>>>


Following the presentations and discussions, delegates split into smaller groups (workshops) to discuss three specific areas identified through the preliminary assessments as requiring further development:

(1)    Footprinting – what is the impact of the UK’s activities elsewhere?

(2)    Climate change – can we measure the impact on biodiversity?

(3)    Volunteering/public awareness – how can we improve our measurements of engagement with biodiversity?

For the summary documents and copies of the presentations>>>


Following the workshop, a draft meeting report was produced.