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Insect Pollinator Conservation: A Tour of Policy Efforts

March 31, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

A Deeper Dive: Pollinator Ecology and Conservation

This three-part series will explore the science and policy issues of pollinator ecology and conservation with a focus on birds and bees. Programs include:

Attend one, two, or all three programs to learn what is being done to protect valuable pollinators and what you can do in your home garden to become part of the conservation effort. A separate registration is required for each program.

The March 31 program

Insect pollinators are becoming visible to societies. The value of insect behaviors that pollinate human crops, animal feed, and wildlife forage is entering public consciousness, media, and culture. In light of well-documented declines in managed honey bees, people are becoming aware of declines of the world’s other 20,000+ native bees—the invisible workers whose impact on food security and economics remain unknown. And people now like bees.

The world’s governments are catching up with this popular interest and the science of insect conservation. Insect pollinator decline is inherently a human issue, driven by a history of land-use trends, changes in technologies, and cultural perceptions that unwittingly cause and perpetuate declines. Whereas all environmental policy is about changing human behaviors. Conservation of insect pollinators requires integrating social and ecological understandings to reconfigure human behaviors across societies’ sectors.

In this talk, we take a tour of conservation policy efforts. We examine how the science of insect declines is being translated into nascent international agreements, national, US state, and municipal efforts as well as the conservation practices of home gardeners.

Special attention is given to US state wildlife agencies’ Wildlife Action Plans of 2015–2025 and laws passed by state legislatures between 2000–2017. This timeframe captures pre- and post-publicity of pollinator declines via colony collapse disorder, the evolving research on neonicotinoids, and highly-visible bee kills. These new laws covered apiculture (beekeeping), pesticides, awareness, habitat, and research. Together, they narrate an evolution of bureaucratic thinking on insects. Yet when compared to policies proposed by biologists, legislators failed to address critical policy targets. What merits consideration are areas of legal agreement useful for authoring international, national, state, and municipal policies and piloting new policy instruments amenable to communities, all political parties, and industry.

The speaker

Damon Hall is an assistant professor jointly appointed in the School of Natural Resources and Biomedical, Biological & Chemical Engineering. He is the Certificate Coordinator for the Undergraduate Certificate in Sustainability and Director of the Center for Watershed Management and Water Quality at MU. He received his BS in Agriculture and MA in from Purdue University. At Purdue, he was apiary manager of Dr. Hunt’s Honeybee Genetics Lab. He completed a PhD in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences at Texas A&M University as a Boone & Crockett Conservation Policy Fellow. After postdoctoral at the University of Maine’s Sustainability Solutions Initiative, he was an assistant professor in the Center for Sustainability and Department of Biology at Saint Louis University before joining MU. Damon was hired as a part of the “Pillars of Pursuit” cluster hire under Sustainability inFEWSed (Food, Energy, Water, Smart Cities) in 2018.

His research examines interactions between social and ecological systems where science, policy, and culture meet. His work involves engaging stakeholders in environmental policy, sustainability planning, systems modeling, life cycle assessment, and hydrological modeling. At Mizzou, he heads the Sustainability Science Lab, which includes projects in water resources planning, urban pollinator conservation, and communicating social-ecological systems models. Hall has received grants from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the National Science Foundation, and the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Dr. Hall’s paper, “The city as a refuge for insect pollinators,” has received awards from the Society for Conservation Biology including highest Altmetric score, most cited, and top 20-most downloaded. He has received a teaching honor from Saint Louis University and a partnership award from the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation. His research has been covered by over 130 news and magazine sources since 2018. Professor Hall is a member of the International Society for Sustainability Science, the International Association for Society and Natural Resources, and the Ecological Society of America.

Accessing the Program

This free, online program will take place via Zoom. Registration is currently open and will remain open until the event has ended. Your link to join the program will be included in the confirmation email and on the confirmation screen after you complete your registration.


Click here to register


The Linda Hall Library encourages people of all backgrounds and abilities to enjoy our public programs. Closed captions are provided. If you require additional reasonable accommodations in order to participate, please contact events@lindahall.org or call 816.926.8753 at least 24 hours in advance of the program.

Once you register for this event, you will receive email communications from the Linda Hall Library and the Linda Hall Library Foundation. You may choose to opt out of these communications at any time. Your contact information will not be sold or provided to any third parties.

The program will also be livestreamed on the Library’s Facebook page.


Further reading at the Linda Hall Library


This program is funded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. Its content is solely the responsibility of the Linda Hall Library.


March 31
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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Linda Hall Library



Questions? Contact Eric Ward at 816.926.8753 for more information about these events.

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