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Biodiversity is often associated with global problems such as the extinction of species in tropical rainforests. However, people often fail to establish a link with the nature close to home, in their own cities. Biodiversity action plans mainly concern the living and working environment, and to generate sufficient support for a BAP, the relationship between biodiversity and citizen wellbeing has to be highlighted. Several approaches are available to achieve this, and as the issues at stake are in constant flux, there is little certainty about the most persuasive arguments. Raising public awareness creates new opportunities and new ways to reach target groups.

A persuasive message always contains three elements: it should provide opportunities for tackling an issue, possibilities for practical implementation, and should be focussed on the individual (for you!). (Why would I do something, what can I do, and how do I do it)

Below are some tips for addressing and convincing key target groups.  



“Biodiversity contributes to the quality of life”

Most people are aware of the extinction of species and the loss of natural areas, however projecting a negative, ‘doom-mongering’ message often results only in public apathy.

Let people consider the fact that biodiversity also has a key role to play in their quality of life. This realization provides people with opportunities for direct involvement with a BAP, as it does after all concern the neighbourhood where they live, recreational areas they use, and the park where their children play.

Improving the quality of life sends out a positive message which does not so much focus on the preservation of biodiversity, but more on the satisfaction that comes from improving quality of life by strengthening biodiversity.

See also: Tips for involving and convincing individuals



“Investment in the immediate environment benefit a business’ productivity and green image”

Winning the support of businesses and entrepreneurs requires greater emphasis on the business case for investing in biodiversity. This includes benefits such as attractive shopping areas, natural pest control on farms, recreational facilities for employees, improving productivity, saving energy and projecting a good business image.

Investing in the immediate environment also offers companies the opportunity to strengthen the relationship with local residents and to build a positive image. Corporate community involvement is becoming increasingly popular for the image of a company, and an increasingly important factor in the purchasing decisions of consumers.

See also: Tips for involving businesses


Local authorities

 “Investing in biodiversity can achieve several policy aims in one go”

The returns on community investments made by local authorities and civil society organisations can be boosted by taking into account the services an area delivers. By developing a BAP policy makers can achieve multiple policy aims at the same time. A BAP offers the following opportunities:

  • empowering citizens;
  • creating liveable, safe neighbourhoods;
  • developing an attractive environment for businesses;
  • creating jobs;
  • providing protection against climate change (climate adaptation);
  • strengthening an area’s unique character;
  • improving connections with surrounding countryside.

See also: Tips for involving local authorities