Dr. Piero Visconti received the European Early Career Conservation Award from the SCB Europe Section in 2018 for his scientific contribution to the understanding of species and ecosystems response to global changes and his extraordinary engagement in the science-policy interface.
Piero finished his Ph.D. in 2011 jointly between James Cook University and Sapienza University of Rome, and is now the Springboard Research Fellow at the Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research of University College London and the Institute of Zoology of the Zoological Society of London. He is an exceptional researcher who has published many articles that moved forward the scientific fields of global environmental change, spatial conservation prioritization, and extinction risk analysis, as well as influenced policy to achieve real-world impact of his science.
Piero was Coordinating Lead Author of Chapter 3 of the IPBES Regional Assessment of Europe and Central Asia, “Status, trends and future dynamics of biodiversity and ecosystems services”. He also contributed to the Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 as Lead Author of two chapters, and the IUCN Guidelines on Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment. Piero was also on the scientific advisory board of the IUCN task-force that established the criteria for the identification of the IUCN Key Biodiversity Areas.
Piero is also involved in the conservation of the Marsican Bear, a critically endangered subspecies of brown bear in central Italy. Piero's been involved in reduction of human-wildlife conflicts fundraising and leadership on conservation projects, and more recently membership of the advisory board of Rewilding Apennines, the Italian partner of the Rewilding Europe Network.
Besides these impressive achievements, he has been incredibly important within SCB, especially the Europe Section, of which he was board member from 2011 and President in 2015-2016. During this time, he played a pivotal role as chair of the Scientific Committee of ICCB/ECCB2015 in Montpellier, France, at the time the largest ICCB conference ever organized, with over 2,000 participants.
In his capacity as research fellow at two of the most prestigious conservation research organizations in Europe, he has also engaged whole-heartedly in the teaching and supervision of future conservation scientist and practitioners.
Piero's achievements were acknowledged by the SCB Europe Section with the European Early Career Conservation Award, and he will give a guest-keynote talk upon receiving his prize at the Student Conference on Conservation Science in Tihany, Lake Balaton on September 5th.