In 2012, we held our first Rufford Small Grants conference in Nepal. Due to the success of this the trustees felt that there was a need for more direct communication between the grant recipients. Very often researchers work in isolation and these conferences provide a forum to discuss ideas, problems, issues and create invaluable networking opportunities.

Generally they are 2 or 3 days long. Each recipient talks about their project and then takes questions from their fellow RSG recipients. The chair person leads a debate and it is hoped that solutions to key conservation issues are addressed. In some instances Government ministers attend so that a link between the 'field' and the 'decision makers' can be built. The chair person is generally the organiser of the conference for that particular country.

To make these worthwhile we need a minimum of 20 previous grants recipients, with at least one of these who is able to organise the event. This entails finding a venue, liaising with grantees, providing an agenda and a report, arranging accommodation and food and generally overseeing the smooth running.

In the future, we are looking to hold small, in country conferences with past recipients (particularly in Bolivia, Mongolia, Tibet, China, Russia, and Peru.

If you would like to organise one please contact:

In this section you can read the report from the previous conferences written by the organiser’s themselves.

Conference Reports

30, 31 January - 1 February 2017
Pedro Henrique Cipresso Pereira

The first Rufford Conference in Brazil was an amazing opportunity to share information and integrate all the projects supported by RSG. The conference was held in Recife, Pernambuco State during 30, 31 of January and 01 de February 2017.

The main aims were completely achieve with a total of 30 lectures and more than 20 Rufford grants from Brazil. Most important proposed and achieved aims were:
* Exchange knowledge, ideas, and experience in doing research
* Discuss about current research issues/challenges;
* Create invaluable networking opportunities; and
* Increase communication and information between Rufford Foundation and its grant

14 - 16 November 2016
Lalith Ekanayake

The Rufford in-country conference - Sri Lanka under the theme of “Let’s Protect Sri Lankan Biodiversity” was held between November 14th to November 16th at Oak Ray Regency, Deveni Rajasinghe Mawatha, Kandy, Sri Lanka. This is the first Rufford in-country conference held in Sri Lanka to share the project experience of Rufford grantees among them and also make known to general public. Apart from the grantees some non- grantees also invited to present their reports on research and conservation works. Altogether, 65 participants attended the conference including Mr. Josh Cole, grant director of the Rufford Foundation and several presenters from three south Asian countries (Bangladesh, India and Maldives; one from each country - see Annex 1 in PDF document for full list of participants).

29 - 30 October 2016
Alphonse Karenzi

With all the success stories of the small grants it was felt by the Rufford Small Grants Trustees that there was a need for more direct communication between the grant recipients. Very often researchers work in isolation but these conferences provide a forum to discuss ideas, problems, solutions, issues at hand and create invaluable networking opportunities. It is in that respect, the Rufford Small Grants funded the Regional Conference of the Grantees of the Rufford Small Grants in Ghana.

The Rufford Conference in Ghana took place at the Erata Hotel in Accra, the Capital City of Ghana, from 29th to 30th October 2016. This conference aimed at enhancing the direct communication and partnership between the regional RSG recipients by providing a forum for them to discuss ideas and issues; share the best practices and promote the regional RSG Partnership (network).

This two-day conference brought together 40 Rufford Small Grants Recipients from 6 different west-African and east-African countries, for a weekend of relationship building and mutual learning. 21 RSG recipients came from Ghana, 8 from Benin, 5 from Nigeria, 3 from Cote d’Ivoire, 2 from Rwanda, and 1 from Togo. This conference was officially launched by Mr. Japhet Roberts from Ghana Wildlife Society, on behalf of Dr Erasmus Owusu the CEO of Ghana Wildlife Society.

21 -22 March 2016
Anna Curic

The Rufford Small Grants Conference in Bosnia and Herzegovina “Nature knows no boundaries” was held on 21st – 22nd March, 2016 in Banja Luka. This is one of many RSGF conferences held all over the World with main reason to share our experience during the projects and to connect RSGF winners. The RSG Conference in Bosnia and Herzegovina is also the first conference held in Europe. In Balkan region, including Turkey, Rufford Small Grants Foundation has supported more than 85 nature conservation projects from applicable countries. In year 2016 Banja Luka was host of seven countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo, FYR Macedonia, Albania and Turkey) with 33 researchers participating the Rufford Small Grants Foundation conference.

18-19 January 2016
Renata Leite Pitman & Miryam Quevedo

Peru is strategically located in South America, sharing borders with Ecuador, Bolivia, Co- lombia, Brazil, and Chile, where the Rufford Foundation has supported over 400 projects (Peru 91, Ecuador 46, Bolivia 44, Colombia 89, Brazil 122, and Chile 56). Since many Rufford-supported projects are conservation-driven, we took this opportunity for grantees and Peruvian environmental authorities to meet and explore solutions for strengthen- ing biodiversity conservation in the region. We invited representatives of the Peruvian Ministry of the Environment and Ministry of Agriculture, as well as local university professors. The meeting was enriched by two extra presentations: one by Flavia Mazzini, representing RECONOCE, a scientific collaboration network to strengthen biodiversity conservation in Latin America, created in the last Rufford Meeting in Chile; and a passionate closing presentation made by José Alvarez, Director of the Biological Diversity Office of the Peruvian Environmental Ministry. Another highlight was the presentation by Rufford grantee and laywer Bruno Monteferri, about learning to involve people in financing private and communal conservation in Peru. The official language of the meeting was Spanish, to stimulate discussion with Peruvian authorities. The abstracts and full papers are also presented in Spanish, to facilitate their dissemination in Peru.

October 2015
Jigme Dorji

The RSG Bhutan conference was held at the College of Natural Resources, Royal University of Bhutan, Lobesa from October 29 to 31, 2015. With the theme "Bringing Together Field Researchers in Bhutan" the conference was attended by 35 participants from two countries - Bhutan and Nepal. The participants comprised of 15 Rufford Grantees and 20 non-grantees. Of the 15 Grantees that presented paper on their field research supported by RSG, the broad research areas were mammals, birds, fishes, insects, Reptiles, Amphibians, wetlands and Human-wildlife conflicts (see the details in presentation abstract).

May 2015
Luciano Hiriart-Bertrand

The Rufford Small Grant Conference South America was held by Costa Humboldt and the Centro de Investigaciones Marina de Quintay (CIMARQ) of the Universidad Andres Bello sponsored by The Rufford Foundation. The coastal town of Quintay was the perfect place to host grantees from diverse countries in the continent.

The RGS programme, offers grants to support a variety of environmental and conservation projects, involving both endangered species and ecosystems. In South American, it has been granted 724 projects, which include important contributions to Argentina with 187 projects, Brazil with 126, Peru and Colombia with 91 and 86 respectively, Chile with 56, Uruguay 52, Ecuador 47, Bolivia 44, 26 to Venezuela, Guyana 4 and Paraguay only 2. As a result, numerous initiatives have achieved significant impacts at different levels of organization. Since the creation of a whale sanctuary in Uruguay, the creation of a Marine Protected Area in Chile to protect feeding areas of Blue Whales, to the identification and description of the bacterial diversity associated with several groups or ecosystems. On the other hand, they have sponsored important projects to protect endangered animal species, such as the north-eastern Peruvian amazon giant otter, native deer species in Argentina’s Patagonia or the Pacific’s Ocean black marine turtle.

April 2015
Ian Little & Jiba Magwaza

The 2015 Southern African Rufford Small Grants Conference was held in Cape Town from the 16th to 17th April. The conference was kindly hosted at the South African national Biodiversity Institutes Colophon Room within the conservation wing, a building which was suitably constructed through sponsorship from the Rufford Foundation. The conference delegates were comprised of members by invite only and were primarily previous grant recipients. The region comprises recipients from seven countries including Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, Lesotho and South Africa. Eighty five recipients were invited and although some contact details were old almost all previous recipients were contacted. Of these 31 recipients were able to attend and present at the conference which hosted a total of 56 delegates including plenary speakers, guests and thirteen current conservation biology students (MSc) from the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology. These budding conservation students enjoyed the experience of listening to and meeting a suit of experienced and active conservation practitioners and researchers from across the region.

February 2015
Gustavo Cardenas Hinojosa

The Rufford Foundation & Gustavo Cárdenas Hinojosa held the 1st Rufford Small Grants (RSG) Conference in Mexico. Since 2012 these meetings have been held in different countries with the aim to provide a forum for RSG recipients to share the results of their projects, discuss ideas, problems, issues and create invaluable networking opportunities.

In Mexico, the Rufford Foundation has supported more of 78 nature conservation projects since 2005. With its small grants has allowed getting valuable results and important experiences to young professionals, researchers or conservationists, of research and conservation efforts for nature in Mexico. The diversity of nature conservation projects granted by RSG was highlighted during the project presentations of the 23 previous grantees that attended the Conference. The venue was in Barceló Grand Faro Los Cabos Hotel, San José del Cabo, B. C. S. during February 15th to 18th 2015. The Conference theme was: Sharing Research and Conservation Efforts for Nature in Mexico.

January 2015
Nguyen Hoai Bao

The Rufford Small Grant Recipients Conference has been held during 31st January & 1st February 2015, at the University of Science, Vietnam National University - Ho Chi Minh City. It was organized by the Rufford Foundation, the University of Science in collaboration with Vietnam Wildlife Tours & Research.

Future conferences

September 2020 - India (Udipur) - Contact Rajat Nayak:

October 2020 - Russia (Moscow) - Contact Svetlana: or

October 2020 - Mozambique - Contact Alphonse Karenzi:

October 2020 - Brazil - (Rescheduled from May 2020) - Contact Pedro:

November 2020 - Mexico (La Paz) - (Rescheduled from April 2020) - Contact Agnese Mancini:

November 2020 - Myammar - Contact Jasmine:

December 2020 - Rwanda - Contact Alphonse Karenzi:

February 2021 - Comoros Islands - (Rescheduled from April 2020) - Contact Alphonse Karenzi:

February 2021 - Costa Rica - Contact Damian:

April 2021 - Honduras (Roatan) - (Rescheduled from March 2020) - Contact Alerick Pacay:

May 2021 - Turkey - (Rescheduled from May 2020) - Contact Ana Ćurić: or visit