Conservation and related policy decisions rely heavily on accurate monitoring and data analysis. However, for multispecies assemblages we are severely limited in our ability to measure all components of the system. The dynamicity and non-linear relationships within species assemblages often render community dynamics unpredictable. On the other hand, no single measurement can capture all underlying patterns and processes in an ecosystem. An alternative approach is to identify indicators that are capable of representing aspects of the system relevant to specific management objectives.
Payal's research focuses on the design and use of indicators in management of multi-species networks. The project fits in with CEED's Theme B: Biodiversity Decisions in Dynamic Systems with three broad objectives:
(1) Identifying desirable characteristics of indicators for multi-species assemblages and proposing methods for their measurement.
(2) Developing approaches for the application of indicators in policy and decision making.
(3) Comparing case studies to understand desirable characteristics of indicators for different scenarios, e.g. management of dynamic systems/threats, threatened species conservation and/or conservation in developing countries.