DIVERSITAS INTERNATIONAL BIODIVERSITY OBSERVATION YEAR 2001 (IBOY)
The aims of the International Biodiversity Observation Year 2001 (IBOY) initiative are to increase understanding of biodiversity and to increase public awareness of the importance of biodiversity. To this end, the scientific community has been asked to put forward projects that will contribute to our understanding of this issue, but that will also help to build an integrated science of biodiversity.
Some of these projects also have an educational component. This goal is also that of the DIVERSITAS programme itself, and perhaps, in as much as DIVERSITAS has had problems working across disciplines and attracting funding, it also reflects the failure of the scientific community to date to realize this goal.
The second main goal of IBOY is increase public awareness of the issue of biological diversity and it is attempting to bring the media into the initiative. There are a number of plans for exhibitions, films and television programmes to be produced during 2001 e.g. an IMAX film entitled Life in the Balance
, a touring exhibition of the giant model of the Tree of Life and a project with National Geographic. Ivan Hattingh (an IBOY Steering Committee member) at WWF International is the contact point for these projects.