Original Paper

Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 1261-1267

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

How can we improve information delivery to support conservation and restoration decisions?

  • Nathaniel E. SeavyAffiliated withPRBO Conservation ScienceInformation Center for the Environment, Department of Environmental Science and Policy, University of California Email author 
  • , Christine A. HowellAffiliated withPRBO Conservation Science


Incorporating science into resource conservation and management is becoming increasingly important, but it is not yet clear how to provide information to decision makers most effectively. To evaluate sources of information used to support the management and conservation of California’s riparian bird habitat, we distributed a questionnaire to restoration practitioners and public and private land managers. We asked respondents to rate the importance and availability of different sources of information they use to inform their decisions. Synthetic reviews and peer-reviewed publications both received high importance and availability ratings. Web-based tools received low importance and availability ratings. One-on-one interactions between ecologists and decision makers received high importance ratings, similar to those of peer-reviewed publications and synthetic reviews, but their availability was rated lower than any other method of decision support. Our results suggest that the decision makers we surveyed are already using a wide variety of information, but that prioritizing one-on-one interactions between scientists and decision makers will enhance the delivery of all sources of information.


Conservation planning Decision support tools Evidence-based conservation Ecological restoration Riparian