Prof Rosaleen Duffy at the Drone Ecologies Workshop

Rosaleen Duffy

Exploring the opportunities and risks of aerial monitoring for biodiversity conservation

Prof Rosaleen Duffy participated in this workshop  organised by Dr Naomi Millner at Bristol University  5-6 July 2021 as part of  Dr Millner’s British Academy project on drone ecologies

You can watch a recording of the keynote by Trishant Simlai and her introductory comments here  

Recordings of all the sessions are available on the Cabot Institute, University of Bristol website

It was an interdisciplinary workshop that explored how drones and other monitoring technologies are being implemented as part of biodiversity conservation initiatives around the world. Bringing together social scientists, engineers, anthropologists, geographers, ecologists, technicians, political ecologists, practitioners and other experts, we explored the opportunities that such technologies offer — for example, for democratising the way that knowledge about nature is produced, or yielding new insights into forest loss or habitat restoration. We also explored the potential risks of new monitoring technologies, and what we can do to ensure that they are not exploited to infringe on the rights of rural communities.

Through plenary sessions, roundtables and discussion workshops,  the workshop explored four key lines of questioning across the disciplines:

  • Technicalities: What can drones do in forest/wildlife conservation?
  • Rights and communities: How can drones be used to support the rights of rural communities?
  • Drones and green securitisation: Where and when does monitoring become surveillance?
  • Ethics and protocols: What are best practices for ensuring that drones are used to foster and promote environmental justice

Full Programme Drone Ecologies programme 2021 (PDF, 248kB).