Encyclopedia of Biodiversity

1st Edition

Print ISBN: 9780122268656
eBook ISBN: 9780080917825
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 25th October 2000
Page Count: 4666


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First used in 1980, "biodiversity" often describes the abundance, variety, and genetic constitution of native animals and plants, and has been linked with politics and environmental technology. Although the 1986 National forum on biodiversity brought issues of biodiversity to the fore, the inescapable need to know more about the diversity of life on Earth continues to remain unmet. In recent years, biodiversity has influenced important scientific considerations, international agreements, conventions, conservation initiatives, political debates, and socio-economic implications. Knowledge derived from the study of biodiversity will affect the quality of life enjoyed in the future by influencing decision-making processes and aiding new discoveries. The science of biodiversity has become the science of our future. Our awareness of the loss of biodiversity has brought a long overdue appreciation of the magnitude of our loss and a determination to develop the tools to protect our future. The Encyclopedia of Biodiversity brings together, for the first time, a study of the dimensions of diversity. It examination of the services biodiversity provides, and measures to protect it. Major themes of the work include the evolution of biodiversity, systems for classifying and defining biodiversity, ecological patterns and theories of biodiversity, and an assessment of contemporary patterns and trends in biodiversity.

Key Features

NEW e-updates to this 5-Volume Set on ScienceDirect!

Updates include 21 entirely new articles, 22 updated articles, with 335 articles in total! (more) This reference is also sold as an e-book via ScienceDirect.

  • Distinguished Editorial Board headed by Simon A. Levin, with many other prominent scientists serving as editors
  • More than 300 separate articles, covering 20 different subject areas, from Evolution to Habitats to Economic Issues--all original contributions commissioned for this work
  • Articles by leading authors from major institutions of science around the world
  • Approximately 1,000 figures and tables complement the text
  • More than 3,000 glossary entries explain key terms


University, research, and special libraries; non-profit groups working in biodiversity-related areas; industries with an interest in preserving and utilizing natural resources, from timber and chemical corporations to insurance companies; fish and wildlife exploiters, protectors, and regulators; zoos, zoological societies, and natural history museums


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© Academic Press 2001
Academic Press
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"Compiled by a virtual who's who in the field of conservation science, the Encyclopedia of Biodiversity highlights the critical importance of biodiversity and illustrates why all thinking people should care about stemming the loss of our natural heritage." John Sawhill, President and CEO, The Nature Conservancy

This encyclopedia is a worthwhile investment for anyone in need of a scholarly reference source devoted to biodiversity and related preservation issues. There are no other current encyclopedias that provide comparable in-depth coverage of this increasingly important topic. The Encyclopedia of Biodiversity is particularly recommended for special and academic libraries. For a limited period, access to an upcoming online version is included in the purchase of the print set. American Library Association 

"Five volumes contain 313 signed articles by leading international authors. From the preface: "The entries...have been arranged alphabetically, but the coverage is designed functionally. At the core is a comprehensive survey of biodiversity, across taxonomic groups and ecological regions. The emergence of biodiversity is then placed in an evolutionary perspective, as background for an understanding of current trends. Finally, a review is given of institutions and other mechanisms that exist and are needed for the preservation of biodiversity...." The "contents by subject" listing groups entries according to theme, among them: agriculture, conservation and restoration, economics, environmental conditions and effects, evolution, extinctions, genetics, geographic and global issues, habitats and ecosystems, human effects and interventions, and population issues. Each entry is carefully constructed, with an outline, a glossary, a summary, cross references, and a bibliography accompanying the main body of text. Purchase of the print version confers access to the complementary web site. Book News, Inc., Portla