Lizard, marsh, chicks in nest, bog newt

CBEST’s mission is to conduct and promote innovative research in biodiversity and ecosystem science, and with our commitment to collaboration and stewardship, share that research with our communities.

We are committed to the education and training of undergraduate and graduate students as they develop as young scientists, involving them in field and laboratory research using state-of-the-art facilities and approaches. We work to educate our local Villanova community and beyond about how the Earth’s biodiversity and ecosystems are influenced locally, regionally and globally by anthropogenic activities.

The Center for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Stewardship (CBEST) seeks to promote research in biodiversity and ecosystem science with a focus on understanding people-driven changes in ecosystems, their component organisms and the benefits they provide to society.

  1. Promote and integrate diverse research strengths at Villanova in biodiversity and ecosystem science
  2. Engage with our community to provide educational opportunities in biodiversity and ecosystem science
  3. Form a diverse, inclusive and engaged community of students and researchers in an environment that fosters critical scientific thinking and expands communication skills
  4. Form partnerships with campus, land managers and community forums to promote biodiversity and ecosystem services concepts both locally and abroad

At CBEST, we acknowledge that the sciences of biodiversity and ecosystem stewardship have impacts on social, economic, and environmental justice issues that are manifested at local, regional, and continental scales across the globe.  Too often, we have seen historical legacies of oppression and exploitation that have compromised the cultures of people whose lives depended on land-based living, while at the same time resulted in loss of natural biodiversity and ecosystem functions.  Addressing these kinds of issues holistically is a priority of CBEST.

Further, we acknowledge that the fields of biodiversity and ecosystem stewardship have suffered from a lack of diversity, reflecting a history of exclusion and discrimination that has affected STEM disciplines more broadly.  CBEST believes that the future of our scientific enterprise depends on a diverse research community, comprised of individuals who bring their individual backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences to bear on the pressing issues that we face.  CBEST is committed to achieving a more diverse community of faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students, in the belief that to promote the common good, we must have a diversity within CBEST that reflects the diversity in the world in which we live.

We welcome you to read the CBEST Statement on Anti-Racism and Promoting Equality and Justice, 15 June 2020.

CBEST also supports the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion statements of the Department of Biology and the Department of Geography and the Environment.

We encourage you to visit Diversity, Equity and Inclusion websites of Villanova University and of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.


Your donations support the Center in its mission to conduct and promote innovative research in biodiversity and ecosystem science, and share that research with the community.