Conservation GIS


A chance to get together with your fellow GIS specialists from across Cambridge and talk geography.  There are many organisations and individuals that use GIS in conservation in and around Cambridge and a forum to improve communication, as well as reduce duplication, will be useful across the sector.  The group aims to strengthen links between organisations with complimentary business objectives and provide a forum for learning, support and synergy.


The overall aim of the group is to bring together GIS specialists, or people with an interest in GIS, in the Cambridge area.  Activities and objectives are to network and meet new people, share ideas and best practice, build capacity and provide advice, form new collaborations, learn new tools and methodologies and just generally have some fun.  It aims to be beneficial from a business point of view as new opportunities and efficiencies are identified, but also individually as you grow as a conservation GIS expert.


We are planning to undertake the following training activities in 2018, in the form of classroom-style worked-through tutorials and workshops.
  • remap
    Remap is an online mapping platform for people with little technical background in remote sensing, developed to enable you to quickly map and report the status of ecosystems, contributing to a global effort to assess all ecosystems on Earth under the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems.
  • MapforEnvironment
    Use the 'Missing Maps model' to monitor forest degradation in the Romanian Carpathians, perhaps using the Primary Forests Potential Map of Romania  recently published by Greenpeace Romania et al. The MapforEnvironment platform is still in its infancy, but we're currently talking with them about getting a project set up in their new Task Manager.
  • FOSS4G GeoAcademy Curriculum
    Run through some of the intro to GIS lectures available from the FOSS4G Academy on Spatial Query Lab, with a view to perhaps running as a regular series. Essentially this will be QGIS training from beginner level, working our way to intermediate and advanced if there's enough interest.

If you're interested in helping to coordinate any of these training opportunities then please do get in touch - we'd love to hear from you!

Events will be advertised through the CCF Events Calendar and the CCF Newsletter.


Contact: Thomas Starnes (GIS Analyst, RSPB) at for more information, or if you would like to be subscribed to the CCF Conservation GIS group mailing list.


Past Events 

Welcome meeting!

The 1st meeting was held on Monday 28th October at 6pm in the Castle Inn, Castle Street.  Approximately 20 people from 9 organisations attended and got involved in GIS speed dating, a discussion about the network and potential activities for the future and even a geography quiz!  It was an interesting and lively night with lots of conversation and networking.  The discussion notes are attached.

Open source GIS demos!

The 2nd meeting was held on Tuesday 10th December at 6:30pm at UNEP-WCMC.  Three demos were given by network members on open source GIS technology ad applications.  Approximately 35 people attended from 15 organisations.  Slides of the demos will be uploaded shortly.

CCI/CCF Conservation GIS speaker event!

The 1st external speaker event was held on Thursday 28th February 2014 at the Judge Business School.  Four speakers gave short 15 minute presentations on their specialism in conservation GIS, followed by a networking event at the Bath House pub.  30 people attended from 16 organisations.  The presenters' slides are available below.

1.  Dr France Gerard, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, UK
    "The implications of using earth observation data for national/continental scale biodiversity monitoring"
2.  Dr Chandra Giri, USGS, USA
   "Monitoring the status and trends of the world's mangroves using earth observation"
3.  Annemarieke de Bruin, Stockholm Environment Institute - York, UK
    "The Power of Maps - participatory approaches"
4.  Dr Peter Long, University of Oxford, UK
   "Local Ecological Footprinting Tool (LEFT)"


Due to the success of the 1st session, the next Conservation GIS speaker event is organised - Wednesday 7th May.  Start time (5:30pm, tea/coffee served from 4:30pm), same place (Castle Teaching Room at the Judge Business School), same pub afterwards at 6:30pm onwards (The Bath House, Benet Street). All are welcome, not just GIS experts!!

Speakers confirmed:

1.  George MacKerron, Lecturer in Environmental Economics, University of Sussex - "Happiness is greater in natural environments: the Mappiness study"

2.  Jake Bicknell - PhD student, DICE, University of Kent - “The future of protected areas in Guyana’s vast primary forests, and an unforeseen advantage of REDD+”

3.  Zoe Davies, Senior Lecturer in Biological Conservation, DICE, University of Kent - "Quantifying biological carbon storage in cities"

Let me know if you plan to attend by emailing  The room has a capacity of 50.  Looking forward to seeing you there!