Biodiversity and Ethical Business

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Benchmark of Charities with a Focus on Biodiversity


To create a successful marketing plan it is important to benchmark how, where and to what charities the general public can donate in relation to biodiversity and taxonomy. First it is necessary to get a general idea of what the charity market for biodiversity and taxonomy consists of and secondly to begin to understand how the taxonomy project can differentiate itself from the many charities that exist.

The methodology followed consisted of internet searches and verifying charities listed by students on a survey given to students at Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Overall 61 charities were considered on the initial listing. Thirty one of them were found to not be directly related to taxonomy or biodiversity causes. A complete definition of what was considered to be directly related can be found in the section below. Overall nine charities appeared frequently in the internet searches and on the survey and therefore became the focus of this study.

Determining Factors of Charities Benchmarked

Based on the fact that Biodiversity and Taxonomy have a strong relationship with nature and life on earth we focused on charities that used donations to protect and conserve the environment, natural habitats, wildlife and combating climate change.

Charities that were not considered focused their efforts on saving domesticated animals, feeding the hungry, eliminating poverty or eradicating diseases.


The following nine charities were benchmarked to determine their main purpose, the slogan, the range of possible donations, where they help, the number of supporters and finally the revenues per year. The revenues were taken from the most recently published annual reports if available. Below is a summary of the results. For more detail please see the attached Excel spreadsheet.

The Nature Conservancy


Since 1951, they use science and partnerships to protect Earth’s most important natural places. Donators who want to get involved with the conservancy can choose to adopt an acre of land, rescue a reef, donate monthly, or simply join the membership program.

National Geographic Society


National Geographic Society was founded in 1888. They focus on exploration and conservation of forests, oceans, habitats, species and societies. They inspire people to care about the planet through education through media, toys and museums. They also promote a Green Guide which shows the general public how to live a greener life. (energy conservation-holidays etc)

World Wildlife Fund


The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) works to preserve the diversity and abundance of life on Earth & the health of ecological systems by:

* Protecting natural areas & wild populations of plants & animals * Promoting sustainable approaches to the use of renewable natural resources * promoting more efficient use of resources and energy & reduction of pollution

Through WWF communities can reduce poverty, improve socio-economic conditions & become environmental stewards.

Conservation International


Conservation International applies innovations in science, economics, policy, and community participation to protect the Earth’s biodiversity around the world. The fund more than 1,200 non-governmental groups, and small businesses. On their website they provide information for ecotourism and have an interactive map.



Greenpeace has been fighting for the preservation of the earth since 1971. They utilize direct action, lobbying and research to achieve their goals. They do not accept donations from governments or corporations but rely on contributions from individual supporters and foundation grants.

National Wildlife Federation


The National Wildlife Federation strives to protect wildlife at all costs. They also have campaigns in global warming and environmental education. They believe that education is the best way to help the environment – the more you know, the more you can protect the world we live. Donators are able to adopt an acre or an animal through symbolic donations of $30. In exchange for the donation you receive an adoption certificate, toy, screensaver and satisfaction.

International Fund for Animal Welfare


The International Fund for Animal Welfare works to improve animal welfare, prevent animal cruelty and abuse, protect wildlife and provide animal rescue around the world. They create solutions that benefit both animals and people. They also provide emergency relief to animals in crises, and saves pets and wildlife.

World Land Trust


The World Land Trust fights for rainforest conservation. They promote wildlife conservation by purchasing endangered land.

Sierra Club


The Sierra Club wants to explore, enjoy, and protect the wild places of the earth; To practice and promote the responsible use of the earth’s ecosystems and resources; To educate and enlist humanity to protect and restore the quality of the natural and human environment; and to use all lawful means to carry out these objectives. They organize international, domestic/local outings & excursions related to nature, volunteering or wildlife. They have opportunities to donate/volunteer specifically to your local area by having local offices.


The charities that were studied were quite large with typically more than one million supporters. The Nature Conservancy and the World Wildlife Fund both received the largest percentage of donations from individuals; 60% and 19.2% respectively. Most of the charities supported causes around the globe and had membership opportunities that did not require donations. Donations could be made regularly or as a single donation in varying amounts. There are many charities for people to satisfy the need of helping to create a better society by donating time or money. It is important for each charity to differentiate themselves in order to attract the most interest to aide in their causes.