Brand-New Book ‘Local Voices, Local Choices’ Partnership Between Esri & JGI


A forthcoming book – June 2022 – titled ‘Local Voices, Local Choices: The Tacare Approach to Community-Led Conservation‘ chronicles the stories behind Dr. Jane Goodall’s holistic approach to conservation. For nearly 30 years, JGI’s innovative community-led conservation approach known as ‘Tacare’ – developed by pioneering scientist and activist Dr. Jane Goodall – has been developing holistic solutions to the complex problems driving conservation challenges by putting local people and institutions at the center.

Chimpanzees, other great apes, and their habitats are endangered – at a population of millions just 100 years ago, their numbers could be less than 300,000 in the wild. Without proactive, holistic solutions, they could disappear within the next century. Tacare focuses on collaboration with local communities, integrating community knowledge, key partnerships, conservation action planning, and cutting-edge science, along with geospatial technologies and spatial planning, to advance better decision-making for all. 

As the drivers of primary conservation threats like deforestation, disease, and illegal wildlife trade are often social and economic inequities, Tacare programs invest in alternative sustainable livelihood trainings, land-use planning, habitat restoration, water management, health care, education, micro-credit opportunities, and more. Through this approach, JGI is minimizing the threats to individuals and populations of chimpanzees and other great apes, along with their habitats, by empowering people to steward their own lands and natural resources growing peaceful coexistence and improved well-being. 

Summer 2022, ‘Local Voices, Local Choices,’ created in partnership between Esri – a global leader in GIS – and the Jane Goodall Institute, will explore the story, impact, and future of the Tacare community-led approach, as well as the narratives of the people who make it possible. Together, Esri and JGI are providing a new way forward to improve conservation fueled by science and technology to deepen and expand impact –providing new hope for people, other animals, and the planet we share.

The book will include:

  • The origins of the Tacare approach, originally designed as a 1994 reforestation project with an abbreviation pronounced “ta-CAR-reh” around Gombe, Tanzania – where Dr. Goodall first began her research and where it contineus today as the longest running wild chimpanzee study in the world;
  • A retired community member keeping the knowledge of medicinal plants alive;
  • Spiritual and cultural story-holders who are vital to the recording and preservation of their traditional ecological knowledge’
  • Local people participating as forest monitors, community health workers, beekeepers, small-business owners, and educators of the next generation;
  • Former participants in the illegal wildlife trade turned advocates for sustainable land management and more.

Story by story, Local Voices, Local Choices brings readers into the diverse perspectives, science, and technology behind this approach to community-led conservation—not only those of JGI staff and program partners but also, and equally, those of the local people who lead these initiatives.

Listen to and share Dr. Goodall’s episode with Dr. Lilian Pintea, vice president of conservation science at JGI and a driving force behind Tacare below:

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About Author

Ashley Sullivan is the Communications & Policy Officer at the Jane Goodall Institute, where she works to connect individuals with Dr. Goodall's vision, and the JGI mission. Ashley graduated Stony Brook University with a B.A. in Anthropology and a minor in Biology, and is currently pursuing a MS in Environmental Science & Policy at Johns Hopkins University. She has a varied background including conservation, art, communications, digital media, design, photography, and documentary filmmaking. Ashley believes in sharing information to empower and in the magic of storytelling to change hearts and minds. Through growing understanding, empathy, and justice, she believes it is possible to ignite positive change, every day.