The consequences of biodiversity loss will be borne by all of us. Yet, the awareness of biodiversity remains lacking in the wider society. For example, the German National Strategy for Biological Diversity set the objective that 75 per cent of the population should be aware of biodiversity. However, the data show a different reality. In 2019, a survey carried out in Germany showed that “Awareness for Biological Diversity” measured by knowledge, attitudes, and behavioural willingness to protect biodiversity, was only 28 per cent—an increase by 6 per cent over the past ten years (Naturbewusstsein 2019, BMU). Improved awareness of biodiversity and its value for society creates a key leverage point to halt its loss. To increase the public awareness of biodiversity, it is crucial to mainstream the concept of biodiversity (genes, species, and ecosystems) to the broad society. This calls for public discourse on the topic.
Through an event series with the title “Saxon Dialogue on Biodiversity” (“Sächsischer Biodiversitätsdialog“) we want to contribute to improving the public awareness on biodiversity. The series of events includes public panel discussions with academic and practical experts from Saxony who discuss the various components, functions, values, and threats to biodiversity, as well as actions to counteract its loss. Both the role of the individual and of society will be at the centre of the public debate. In the long term, the overall aim is to strengthen voluntary commitment, to improve the knowledge and attitude towards biodiversity, and to induce behavioural changes in favour of biodiversity protection.
The planned event series contains a series of panel discussions with experts from Saxony and a photo competition. The discussions will be streamed online to reach a broad audience. During the discussion, participants are encouraged to actively engage and share their thoughts and opinions. In advance of the panel, members of the public are invited to submit photos for a thematic competition on biodiversity. After the event series, a digital publication showcasing selected photos and a summary of the knowledge transferred will be put together and distributed through various communications channels.
This project is funded by the “eku Future Prize for Energy, Climate, Environment in Saxony” by the Saxon State Ministry for Energy, Climate Protection, Environment and Agriculture.