Braiding biotechnology, Indigenous science, and Traditional Ecological Knowledge to conserve biodiversity. 

The Wise Ancestors platform interweaves genomic sequencing, biobanking, and Indigenous Knowledge to create, fund and complete Conservation Challenges, accelerating the conservation of Earth's biodiversity for the benefit of all.

A transparent and equitable way to collaborate on biodiversity conservation. 
Proboscis Monkey Mother & Child, Steve Mandel Photography
Proboscis Monkey Mother & Child, Steve Mandel Photography
Cheetah Family, Steve Mandel Photography

Open for Collaboration

Wise Ancestors is committed to the development of new modes of collaboration, engagement, and partnership with Indigenous peoples for the care and stewardship of past and future heritage collections.

For more information about this notice, visit Local Contexts website

Beth Shapiro

Director, Wise Ancestors

"I'm thrilled to be part of Wise Ancestors' mission to empower future generations to safeguard biodiversity by preserving genomes and species that are alive today."

Join our future platform
to collaborate on our Conservation Challenges

Apply and secure funding to contribute to conservation missions. Each mission is centered around conserving one or more species and involves tasks such as collecting, sequencing and biobanking.

For Scientists

Whether you are a sample provider, sequencer, bioinformaticist or biobanker, join forces with us to advance the frontiers of conservation biotechnology and help save biodiversity.

This arrow links to "Engage as a scientist" page

For Indigenous Peoples & Local Communities

Contact us to co-create a Conservation Challenge to conserve culturally salient or endangered species before they are lost forever, ensure benefit sharing with, and promote land stewardship by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities.

This arrow links to "Engage as a scientist" page

For Philanthropists

Whether you are an individual or a corporation, contribute funds to help support our Conservation Challenges and benefit-sharing projects in support of Indigenous People and Local Community driven conservation activities and land stewardship, and earn Wise Ancestors certification.

This arrow links to "Engage as a scientist" page
Multi-sided decision making

Wise Ancestors Conservation Challenges are co-developed with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities. 

Participatory project co-design gives Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities agency over decisions related to their species, land and future. Terms and conditions will be mutually agreed upon prior to project initiation, including the rules around sample and data access, resource labeling, resource usage, and benefit-sharing plans. 

Biodiversity conservation initiatives must include Indigenous Peoples & Local Communities
Pygmy Elephant, Steve Mandel Photogrpahy

Discover the Team

A team of passionate and committed people working towards the same goal: saving our biodiverse planet

Get more info

Discover our work in more detail.
What does IPLC stand for ?

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Why sequencing species DNA is important ?

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How can you create a Conservation Challenge ?

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Why biobanking is important ?

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Why sequencing species DNA is important? 

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Take part in our biodiversity conservation survey for Hawaii

Your insights will help us plan the best conservation projects that are aligned with local Hawaiian values.

The Hawaiian artist Prime and Wise Ancestors collaborated on designing stickers and a survey to raise awareness of biodiversity in Hawaii.  

Photo credit : DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARADVERTISER.COM

Keoki’s Family stickers: Paying tribute to an extinct tree snail species.

Keoki's Family stickers emerged from a unique partnership between Wise Ancestors and the Native Hawaiian artist, Prime. Drawing inspiration from the poignant history of the Hawaiian tree snails, many of which tragically face extinction or are already extinct, this artistic endeavor aims to pay homage to these creatures and preserve their memory.

Delving into the narrative, the last known member of the species Achatinella apexfulva, named George, became a symbol central to the project. In a tribute to this final representative of the species, artist Prime crafted the character Keoki, adopting the Hawaiian version of the name George, and envisioned an entire family around him. Keoki's Family is not just a creative expression: it's a collaborative effort to ensure that both our current generation and those to come remain cognizant of the vanished tree snail species and the significant risk that other species are currently experiencing.

By exploring the story behind Keoki and his kin, this artwork serves as a powerful reminder of the role that art can play in species conservation. For further insights into the history and significance of the tree snail podcast, see
this blog post from the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Ann Pace

Executive Director, Wise Ancestors

"What sets Wise Ancestors apart is our commitment to work side by side with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities in developing projects and solutions, and in ensuring that the resources we create are appropriately and prominently labeled with Indigenous attributions and usage information."

Do you want to connect? 

We are always interested in connecting with people who share our passion for conserving the Earth's biodiversity in harmony with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities.