Conference Hosts

David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University

Lincoln Institute
of Land Policy

Universidad Austral
de Chile


Ash Institute for Democratic 
Governance and Innovation at
the Harvard Kennedy School

Forrest Berkley
and Marcie Tyre

Conservation Finance Forum

David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University

Environmental Leadership and Training Initiative (Yale/Smithsonian)

The Betsy and Jesse Fink Foundation

Grasty Quintana Majlis & Cia.

Harvard Forest

Horizon Foundation

Lincoln Institute
of Land Policy

Maine Coast Heritage Trust

The Nature Conservancy

Trust for Public Land

Universidad Austral
de Chile

Conservation Capital in the Americas Conference

Participant Biographies

Participant Homework

Preliminary Conference Roster

Press Release (English)

El Mercurio Feature on Conference 12/23/08 (Spanish)

Field Guide to the Valdivian Coastal Reserve

Conference held in January 2009 in Valdivia, Chile

The Conservation Capital in the Americas Conference was held January 17th-19th, 2009, in Valdivia, Chile. Participating in the conference were approximately 100 invited conservation practitioners, educators and students from North, Central, and South America. Jim Levitt, Director of The Program on Conservation Innovation at The Harvard Forest, coordinated the event, which explored some of the most effective practices and emerging innovations in the field of conservation finance.

Conservation finance can be used to help protect land and biodiversity and enhance local economies across the Western Hemisphere from Chilean Patagonia to the coast of Labrador. Conference participants considered several of the most promising approaches to conservation finance including: the use of emerging carbon markets to conserve working forests and agricultural landscapes; the creation of other ecosystem service markets to advance the protection of natural systems; “conservation investment banking” methods such as public and private debt-for-nature swaps; micro, small, and medium enterprise financing methods to achieve conservation in concert with economic development; third-party certified forestry and agriculture; and the use of tax and public budgetary policy to finance land conservation initiatives.

Partners and funders for the conference and for a forthcoming book to be based on presentations made at the meeting include the Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Harvard Kennedy School, the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University, the Environmental Leadership and Training Institute (a joint initiative of the Smithsonian Institution and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies), the Harvard Forest, the Horizon Foundation, the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, the Trust for Public Land, and the Universidad Austral de Chile.