Rapid Biological Inventories: What is a RBI?

The goal of rapid biological and social inventories is to catalyze effective action for conservation in threatened regions of high biological diversity and uniqueness.

During rapid biological inventories, scientific teams focus primarily on groups of organisms that indicate habitat type and condition and that can be surveyed quickly and accurately. These inventories do not attempt to produce an exhaustive list of species or higher taxa. Rather, the rapid surveys (1) identify the important biological communities in the site or region of interest and (2) determine whether these communities are of outstanding quality and significance in a regional or global context.

During rapid social asset inventories, scientists and local communities collaborate to identify patterns of social organization and opportunities for capacity building. The teams use participant observation and semi-structured interviews to quickly evaluate the assets of these communities that can serve as points of engagement for long-term participation in conservation.

In-country scientists are central to the field teams. The experience of local experts is crucial for understanding areas with little or no history of scientific exploration. After the inventories, protection of natural communities and engagement of social networks rely on initiatives from host-country scientists and conservationists.

Once these rapid inventories have been completed (typically within a month), the teams relay the survey information to local and international decision makers who set priorities and guide conservation action in the host country.

What is a rbi?
the rbi team
What do we do?
Results from the Field
Image Gallery

rbi home | what is a rbi? | the rbi team | what do we do? | results from the field | image gallery | Field Museum Home

© 2019 The Field Museum, All Rights Reserved
1400 S. Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60605-2496

Copyright Information | Linking Policy

Technical Support