Biodiversity at UBC

Buchanan Courtyard. Photo by Don Erhardt, Creative Commons License.


Who We Are

The UBC Vancouver campus is host to a multitude of biodiversity assets and ecosystem services. For instance, we are located along the Pacific Flyway — an important bird migratory route; we neighbour 800 hectares of second growth forest at Pacific Spirit Park; and we are home to the UBC Botanical Garden, a living museum of local and international plant species. With these assets in our midst, it is our turn to join the international momentum and demonstrate UBC’s position as a global change-maker through our actions to enhance biodiversity.

The Campus Biodiversity Initiative: Research and Demonstration (CBIRD) is an interdisciplinary collaborative of networks, projects, and research that supports biodiversity plans, policies, strategies, and actions at the UBC Vancouver campus.

Campus Biodiversity Initiative: Research & Demonstration (CBIRD)

We are excited to introduce you to CBIRD and look forward to your future involvement in the initiative. For more information, read our Annual Report


Enable the campus community to cultivate innovative ideas, research and actions that advance biodiversity policies and implementation, supporting a positive and nurturing relationship between the natural and built environment.


To inform policy and practice that enhances biodiversity through research, education, campus and wider community engagement, and demonstration. We will further our mission with the following objectives:

  1. Cultivate biodiversity stewards by increasing public awareness and understanding of biodiversity issues and solutions.
  2. Advance policies and practices that address and respond to key biodiversity issues.
  3. Utilize the Campus as a Living Laboratory.


  1. Interdisciplinary
  2. Whole-systems thinking
  3. Empowerment
  4. An action-oriented approach
  5. Scalability + replicability

CBIRD Steering Committee & Stakeholders

The CBIRD Steering Committee relies on interdisciplinary collaboration. It is comprised of biodiversity stakeholders across 17 UBC departments and operational units, who provide high-level oversight and guidance to CBIRD. Through the extended networks of the committee’s individual members, the Steering Committee helps advance interdisciplinary relationships across faculty and operational units.

Collectively this collaboration continues to transform UBC into a living laboratory and a global leader in sustainability research and practice.

Read more about our Steering Committee and other biodiversity stakeholders on campus here.

Campus Biodiversity Centres

UBC Botanical Garden

The UBC Botanical Garden is Canada’s oldest university botanic garden, established in 1916 under the directorship of John Davidson, British Columbia’s first provincial botanist. Since its establishment, the mission of the UBC Botanical Garden has broadened to include research, conservation, teaching and public display of temperate plants from around the world.

Beaty Biodiversity Museum

The Beaty Biodiversity Museum strives to inspire an understanding of biodiversity, its origins, and importance to humans through collections-based research, education and outreach. As Vancouver’s natural history museum, we work to promote a greater sense of collective responsibility for the biodiversity of British Columbia, Canada, and the world

UBC Farm

The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS), located at the UBC Farm, is a unique research centre that aims to understand and fundamentally transform local and global food systems towards a more sustainable, food secure future. The CSFS is a living laboratory, committed to finding solutions to both the local and global challenges facing food systems sustainability and translating solutions to improve personal, community, and environmental health.


What We Do 

CBIRD is embedded in the SEEDS Sustainability Program. SEEDS employs a whole-university approach, drawing on principles of whole systems thinking to advance sustainability on the Vancouver campus through applied student research projects. Projects are framed around one of many interdisciplinary research clusters, from biodiversity to wellbeing. Each cluster is supported by a guiding committee comprised of stakeholders representing a multitude of research specializations and operational sectors of the University. Each project builds off findings and recommendations from previous projects, which are often outside the student’s discipline. In this way, SEEDS provides a unique opportunity for collaborative, problem-focused learning through the partnerships made between students, faculty, staff and, community partners. These projects integrate students’ energy and enthusiasm for sustainability, faculty members’ research experience, and the commitment and expertise of staff to advance sustainability on campus and beyond.

SEEDS Sustainability Library 

The SEEDS Program Library is Campus Sustainability's digital repository for all SEEDS student reports. Reports in the Library provide a historical record of sustainability at UBC. They contribute to creating a culture of sustainability on campus, and offer valuable sustainability research to the global community.

The reports published in the Library are accessible to the public. If you would like more information on any of the findings contact a SEEDS representative at

Biodiversity 411 Map

The purpose of this map is to identify biodiversity assets on the UBC Vancouver campus. Biodiversity assets are places, people, programs, and projects that enhance, conserve, and educate about biodiversity on campus.

Have a marker to contribute? Email


Get Involved

Student research is the centerfold of CBIRD, and will inform the foundation of multiple UBC biodiversity-affiliated policy initiative and actions to come. Take a look at how you can get involved in SEEDS at our current opportunities page. 

Have questions or want to get involved in CBIRD? Send us an email at

Partner Links

Our partners have provided a number of resources to support biodiversity at your home:

  • A guide to eco-friendly lawns and gardens.

  • A toolkit to support climate action and the urban forest in your neighbourhood.


Stay tuned for events.