Event – Annual DICE Lecture 2016 – Prof Rosie Woodroffe


On Thursday 10th March 2016 the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology will hold its 23rd annual DICE lecture.

This year, we welcome Professor Rosie Woodroffe, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Zoology, London. Professor Woodroffe’s research falls at the interface of conservation biology, disease ecology, and animal behaviour. As a consequence, her work is highly inter-disciplinary and involves collaboration with a wide array of colleagues from pathologists to economists. She has a strong commitment to using science to influence both policy and conservation action. For this reason, most of the research questions that Professor Woodroffe poses are applied in nature; however several have turned out to have fundamental importance in ecology.

Professor Woodroffe will give a talk entitled: Badgering: The Science, Policy and Politics of Managing Cattle Tuberculosis.

People who make decisions – from world leaders to individuals – are likely to make better choices if they have some evidence of which options are more likely to achieve their aims. This is especially true for decisions involving wildlife, because natural systems are complex and can respond to management in unexpected ways.
Britain’s management of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in cattle showcases the highs and lows of evidence-based policymaking. The problem is real: each year TB kills tens of thousands of cattle, brings misery to thousands of farmers, and costing taxpayers tens of millions of pounds. TB transmission from wild badgers contributes to the problem, and badger culling has been part of TB control policy for decades. However, scientific evidence shows that, counter-intuitively, badger culling can undermine progress to TB eradication.
In this lecture I will explore the scientific evidence surrounding badger culling, discussing how this evidence has influenced the decisions made by policymakers, lobbyists, and activists, and drawing wider conclusions for the development of evidence-based environmental policy and the application of conservation science.


The DICE annual lecture will take place in Grimond Lecture Theatre 2 at 18:30 on Thursday 10th March; there will be a buffet in the Grimond foyer beforehand from 17:30.

The event is free to attend, and open to all, but advance booking is required: please register here



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