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Director, Climate, Community & Biodiversity Alliance
The Center for Environmental Leadership in Business
Conservation International

University of Cambridge, UK: MA Zoology
University of Kent, UK: PhD Ecology

Joanna Durbin leads the Climate, Community & Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA) an international partnership convened by Conservation International (CI) between some of the world’s leading companies and NGOs including BP, Intel, SC Johnson, Weyerhaeuser, CI, CARE, Rainforest Alliance, The Nature Conservancy and the Wildlife Conservation Society.

The CCBA aims to foster the creation of a robust global carbon market for forest projects that simultaneously mitigate climate change, benefit local communities and conserve biodiversity. In 2005, the CCBA released the Climate, Community & Biodiversity (CCB) Standards to provide investors and project managers with a practical tool to evaluate the quality of land-based carbon mitigation projects from the early stages of development and they have since become the leading premium-quality standard for forest carbon projects.

Before joining CCBA in 2007, Joanna directed the Madagascar Program of the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust for ten years, leading a multi-disciplinary Malagasy team implementing a portfolio of species conservation projects, working closely with local communities in seven sites. She also pioneered innovative conservation incentive agreements with communities for biodiversity conservation and sustainable resource management giving her direct practical experience of mechanisms that effectively and positively bring global value down to the local level.

Following the Madagascar President’s decision to triple protected areas in 2003, Joanna participated actively in the Madagascar Projected Area Commission’s work to develop a new style of protected areas that benefit local people and biodiversity and led a research project evaluating the development of shared governance structures involving local communities in management of the new protected areas.

Her earlier PhD research explored the development of effective local governance of natural resources to achieve conservation and sustainable development in Madagascar. This was followed by two years working for the World Wildlife Fund supporting community conservation projects. When she left Madagascar after almost 20 years she was delighted to receive the Chevalier de l’Ordre National, a national honor, from the Government in recognition of her contributions to biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

Joanna now lives in Washington DC with her husband, Frank, and two children, Eleanor and Madeline.


© CI, Neil Maddison

 Photo credits for banner image: (Zebras in Botswana) © CI, Chris Brooks