Are you interested in learning about community conservation and why is it critical for the survival of our planet? Are you interested in implementing a community conservation project? See below for answers to questions about community conservation.

Please revisit this page as we add more resources in the “learn more” links. Currently, the buttons go to relevant publications by CC or our partners.

What is community conservation?

Community conservation is local communities protecting biodiversity and natural resources. This approach recognizes that local people are often the best stewards of their own land and that they have a vested interest in its conservation. Key ingredients include community tenure, the existence of rules and participation in rule-making, and the monitoring and enforcement of rules. Community conservation is an effective and powerful process for conserving biodiversity and it also builds communities’ capacity for good governance and sustainable livelihoods.

Why does community conservation work?

It works because people want to conserve biodiversity, live in a healthy environment, and protect their natural resources. They appreciate a diversity of benefits from biodiversity, both direct and indirect. Even protected areas like national parks and wildlife reserves are appreciated by communities.

Why do people participate in conservation activities?

When people participate in community conservation activities, not only do their communities receive a diversity of benefits, but so do they through their participation.

Does community conservation work across large scales?

A critical piece of community conservation is conservation contagion. When one community conserves biodiversity, the concept spreads throughout nearby communities, scaling up the impact of community conservation.


The involvement of women in conservation is critical for community conservation to be successful.  After all, they are half of the community but too often are not fully included. Consideration of gender also highlights the importance of access to conservation activities and information and how pathways to participation may be different for different groups of people.