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Research Group Leader Biodiversity, Ecology, and Conservation Research Group
Biodiversity and Natural Resources Program
+43(0) 2236 807 427
Piero Visconti is the Leader of the Biodiversity, Ecology, and Conservation (BEC) Research Group at IIASA and an honorary research fellow with the Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research, UCL, and the Institute of Zoology of the Zoological Society of London as well as an Academic Visitor with the University of Cambridge Conservation Science Group. He co-supervises PhD students at each of these institutions.
Dr. Visconti completed a PhD in Conservation Planning between James Cook University and the Global Mammal Assessment programme (GMA) at Sapienza University of Rome jointly in 2011. From 2011 to 2012, he was a postdoc at the University of Rome and thereafter at the Microsoft Research Cambridge Computational Ecology group and at UNEP-WCMC from 2015 to 2016. His research during this period focused on understanding species responses to land-use and climate change and projecting these responses under future global change scenarios. For this research, he developed analytical methods that integrate statistical models of distribution and abundance of species that use presence data and species' life-history traits, with expert-based information on species habitat preferences. While at Microsoft, he also developed methods to enable planning of conservation interventions under severe uncertainty, and methods to survey species' cost-efficiently borrowing sampling techniques from computer science.
He has been a joint Research Fellow at UCL-CBER and ZSL-IoZ, where he worked on normative scenarios for biodiversity and stress-testing alternative visions for area-based conservation targets that could replace the Aichi Biodiversity targets 5 and 11.
At IIASA, he is continuing to work on exploratory, normative, and ex-ante sustainability scenarios, with a particular focus on pathways that promote biodiversity recovery, at EU, regional and global levels. He is also developing new research that integrates biodiversity feedbacks into food production models and new ecological models that can respond to different types of crop and livestock production systems while taking into account interactive effects of climate and land-use change.
Along-side his research and supervision activities, he engages in the science-policy interface, for instance through his past role of coordinating lead author of the IPBES Regional Assessment of status and trends and future scenarios of biodiversity and ecosystem services for Europe and Central Asia.
Last update: 01 APR 2021
Bolam, F.C., Mair, L., Angelico, M., Brooks, T.M., Burgman, M., Hermes, C., Hoffmann, M., Martin, R.W., et al. (2021). How many bird and mammal extinctions has recent conservation action prevented? Conservation Letters, e12762. 10.1111/conl.12762.
Tang, D.H.Y. & Visconti, P. (2021). Biases of Odonata in Habitats Directive: Trends, trend drivers, and conservation status of European threatened Odonata. Insect Conservation and Diversity 14 (1), 1-14. 10.1111/icad.12450.
Jellesmark, S., Ausden, M., Blackburn, T.M., Gregory, R.D., Hoffmann, M., Massimino, D., McRae, L., & Visconti, P. (2021). A counterfactual approach to measure the impact of wet grassland conservation on UK breeding bird populations. Conservation Biology 10.1111/cobi.13692. (In Press)
Grantham, H. S., Duncan, A., Evans, T. D., Jones, K. R., Beyer, H. L., Schuster, R., Walston, J., Ray, J. C., et al. (2021). Anthropogenic modification of forests means only 40% of remaining forests have high ecosystem integrity. Nature Communications 11 (1) 10.1038/s41467-020-19493-3.
Sperling, F., Havlik, P. , Denis, M., Valin, H. , Palazzo, A. , Gaupp, F., & Visconti, P. (2020). Transformations within reach: Pathways to a sustainable and resilient world - Resilient Food Systems. IIASA Report. IIASA-ISC
Díaz, S., Zafra-Calvo, N., Purvis, A., Verburg, P.H., Obura, D., Leadley, Paul, Chaplin-Kramer, R., De Meester, L., et al. (2020). Set ambitious goals for biodiversity and sustainability. Science 370 (6515), 411-413. 10.1126/science.abe1530.
Strassburg, B.B.N., Iribarrem, A, Beyer, H.L., Cordeiro, C.L., Crouzeilles, R., Jakovac, C.C., Braga Junqueira, A., Lacerda, E., et al. (2020). Global priority areas for ecosystem restoration. Nature, 1-6. 10.1038/s41586-020-2784-9.
Maxwell, S.L., Cazalis, V., Dudley, N., Hoffmann, M., Rodrigues, A.S.L., Stolton, S., Visconti, P., Woodley, S., et al. (2020). Area-based conservation in the twenty-first century. Nature 586 (7828), 217-227. 10.1038/s41586-020-2773-z.
Leclere, D., Obersteiner, M. , Barrett, M., Butchart, S.H.M., Chaudhary, A., De Palma, A., DeClerck, F.A.J., Di Marco, M., et al. (2020). Bending the curve of terrestrial biodiversity needs an integrated strategy. Nature 585, 551-556. 10.1038/s41586-020-2705-y.
Jung, M., Dahal, P.R., Butchart, S.H.M., Donald, P.F., De Lamo, X., Lesiv, M., Kapos, V., Rondinini, C., et al. (2020). A global map of terrestrial habitat types. Scientific Data 7 (1), e256. 10.1038/s41597-020-00599-8.
Sperling, F., Havlik, P. , Denis, M., Gaupp, F., Palazzo, A. , Valin, H. , & Visconti, P. (2020). Report on Second Consultative Science Platform. Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID World. Resilient Food Systems. IIASA-ISC
Sperling, F., Havlik, P. , Denis, M., Valin, H. , Palazzo, A. , Visconti, P., & Gaupp, F. (2020). Report on First Consultative Science Platform. Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID World. Resilient Food Systems. IIASA-ISC
Baisero, D., Visconti, P., Pacifici, M., Cimatti, M., & Rondinini, C. (2020). Projected Global Loss of Mammal Habitat Due to Land-Use and Climate Change. One Earth 2 (6), 578-585. 10.1016/j.oneear.2020.05.015.
Sperling, F., Havlik, P. , Denis, M., Gaupp, F., Krisztin, T. , Palazzo, A. , Valin, H. , & Visconti, P. (2020). Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID World. Resilient Food Systems. IIASA-ISC
Folberth, C. , Khabarov, N. , Balkovic, J. , Skalsky, R. , Visconti, P., Ciais, P., Janssens, I., Peñuelas, J., et al. (2020). The global cropland sparing potential of high-yield farming. Nature Sustainability 3, 281-289. 10.1038/s41893-020-0505-x.
Jung, M., Dahal, P.R., Butchart, S.H.M., Donald, P.F., Rondini, C., & Visconti, P. (2020). A Global Map Of Species Terrestrial Habitat Types. In: World Biodiversity Forum, 23-28 February 2020, Davos, Switzerland.
Almond, R.E.A., Grooten, M. & Peterson, T., eds. (2020). Living Planet Report 2020 - Bending the curve of biodiversity loss. Gland, Switzerland: World Wildlife Fund. ISBN 978-2-940529-99-5
Jung, M., Arnell, A., de Lamo, X., García-Rangel, S., Lewis, M., Mark, J., Merow, C., Miles, L., et al. (2020). Areas of global importance for terrestrial biodiversity, carbon, and water. bioRxiv 10.1101/2020.04.16.021444. (Submitted)
Pereira, H.M., Rosa, I.M.D., Martins, I.S., Kim, H., Leadley, P., Popp, A., van Vuuren, D.P., Hurtt, G., et al. (2020). Global trends in biodiversity and ecosystem services from 1900 to 2050. bioRxiv (Preprint) 10.1101/2020.04.14.031716.
Waldron, A., Adams, V., Allan, J., Arnell, A., Asner, G., Atkinson, S., Baccini, A., Baillie, J., et al. (2020). Protecting 30% of the planet for nature: costs, benefits and economic implications. Campaign for Nature
de Lamo, X., Jung, M., Visconti, P., Schmidt-Traub, G., Miles, L., & Kapos, V. (2020). Strengthening Synergies: How Action to Achieve Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Conservation Targets Can Contribute to Mitigating Climate Change. United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre
Schleicher, J., Zaehringer, J.G., Fastré, C., Vira, B., Visconti, P., & Sandbrook, C. (2019). Protecting half of the planet could directly affect over one billion people. Nature Sustainability 2, 1094-1096. 10.1038/s41893-019-0423-y.
Visconti, P., Butchart, S., Brooks, T., Langhammer, P., Marnewick, D., Vergara, S., Yanosky, A., Crowe, O., et al. (2019). A bold successor to Aichi Target 11—Response. Science 365 (6454), 650.1-651. 10.1126/science.aay2768.
Visconti, P., Butchart, S., Brooks, T., Langhammer, D., Marnewick, D., Vergara, S., Yanosky, A., & Watson, J. (2019). Protected area targets post-2020. Science 364 (6437), 239-241. 10.1126/science.aav6886.
Okayasu, S., Schoolenberg, M., Alkemade, R., den Belder, E., Pereira, H., Lundquist, C., Cheung, W., Rondinini, C., et al. (2019). Report on the workshop ‘Global Modelling of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’. PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
Barrett, M., Belward, A., Bladen, S:, Breeze, T., Burgess, N., Butchart, S., Clewclow, H., Cornell, S., et al. (2018). Living Planet Report 2018: Aiming Higher. WWF
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