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Conservation International (CI)
History and Background

Conservation once focused on preserving natural areas as untouched relics of the past. All that changed in a Washington, DC hotel room on a cold February night in 1987, when a small group of pioneers single-handedly redefined conservation. Instead of keeping places intact as relics of the past, it envisioned conservation as a working model of the future – a future in which people lived in harmony with nature.

Conservation International has made this future a reality with the support of an ever-expanding list of key players. For more than twenty years, we have empowered communities in jungles and deserts to make conservation part of their livelihoods. From early partnerships with Patagonia and Starbucks to our ground-breaking relationship with Wal-Mart, we’ve worked with companies large and small to make conservation part of their business model. Governments from Costa Rica to China have worked with us to make conservation a core component of their national policies. Throughout this process, every strategy, every action has been guided by ground-breaking science.

Today, the world has caught up with us. Governments, businesses, and individuals on every continent recognize that we must balance our needs with nature for a better future. Meanwhile, we continue to make history, developing the tools necessary to protect nature for future generations.

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