The JRS Biodiversity Foundation is an independent grantmaking foundation based in Seattle, Washington with assets of $42 million that awards grants to increase the access to and use of biodiversity information in sub-Saharan Africa.
A world in which biodiversity knowledge substantially contributes to conserving the Earth’s biodiversity for the benefit of society.
To increase access to and use of information that will lead to greater biodiversity conservation and more sustainable development in sub-Saharan Africa.
To increase the capacity of the institutions and people who collect, manage, and disseminate biodiversity data and information (“biodiversity informatics”) in sub-Saharan Africa and to connect this knowledge to those stakeholders — the policymakers, conservationists, investors, and the public — who make and influence decisions that are crucial to preserving biodiversity.
Why does Biodiversity information Matter?
Biodiversity is the foundation of life on Earth and includes the diversity of species, populations, and ecosystems. The food we eat and water we drink, the medicines that improve and lengthen our lives, the beautiful places we enjoy, the air we breathe — all of these depend on biodiversity.
An estimated 50,000 species disappear from our planet every year. While scientists have identified 1.9 million species to date, they believe there are millions more that have yet to be discovered. Thus, the loss is magnitudes greater that we likely even know. Population growth and economic development are the primary drivers of biodiversity loss. Yet, despite a growing awareness of the problem, we continue to consume resources and degrade habitats and place our livelihoods and very existence at risk. When we lose species forever, we lose their potential for helping us sustain our lives and we reduce the resilience of nature and society to adapt to future changes in our environment.
At JRS, we believe that when decision-makers truly understand the essential need for biodiversity and its state of decline, they will fight to preserve it. But right now they don’t have the data and information that they need to make these decisions. We aim to change this.
Facts & Financials
Since grantmaking began in 2007, we have invested greater than $13M in biodiversity informatics projects and plan to commit about $1.7M per year to new grant awards in 2016-2020. We are committed to following the best practices in financial accounting and disclosure for private U.S. foundations.