Rewilding Principles

Solvin Zankl / Rewilding Europe

Rewilding Principles

The principles of rewilding

Rewilding practitioners from across Europe have co-formulated a set of principles that characterise and guide rewilding in a European context. All equally important, these are as follows.


Providing hope and purpose

Rewilding generates visions of a better future for people and nature that inspire and empower. The rewilding narrative not only tells the story of a richer, more vital tomorrow, but also encourages practical action and collaboration today.

Staffan Widstrand / Rewilding Europe

Offering natural solutions

By providing and enhancing nature-based solutions, rewilding can help to mitigate environmental, social, economic and climatological challenges.

Staffan Widstrand

Thinking creatively

Rewilding means acting in ways that are innovative, opportunistic and entrepreneurial, with the confidence to learn from failure.

Andrey Nekrasov

Complementary conservation

By enhancing wild nature and its myriad benefits at all scales, rewilding complements more established methods of nature conservation.

Nuno Sá / Wild Wonders of Europe

Letting nature lead

Rewilding lets restored natural processes shape our landscapes and seascapes in a dynamic way. This will see us intervene less in nature going forwards.


Working at nature’s scale

Rewilding means working at scale to rebuild wildlife diversity and abundance and giving natural processes the opportunity to enhance ecosystem resilience.

Staffan Widstrand

People are key

Rewilding embraces the role of people – and their cultural and economic connections to the land – working within wider, naturally vibrant ecosystems.

Staffan Widstrand / Rewilding Europe

Building nature-based economies

By enhancing wildlife and ecosystems, rewilding provides new economic opportunities through the provision of nature-based livelihoods and income.

Dan Dinu

Acting in context

Approaching rewilding with a long-term knowledge of the environmental and cultural history of a place. Taking account of the cultural, political and physical realities of landscapes and seascapes in rewilding efforts.

Bogdan Comanescu

Working together

Building coalitions and providing support based on respect, trust and shared values. Connecting people of all backgrounds to co-create innovative ways of rewilding and deliver the best outcomes for communities and wild nature.

Roy Beusker

Knowledge exchange

Exchanging knowledge and expertise to continually refine rewilding best practice and achieve the best possible rewilding results.


Rewilding is an innovative and inspirational way of restoring Europe’s wild nature. By allowing natural processes to reshape and enhance ecosystems, rewilding can revitalise land and sea, helping to alleviate some of society’s most pressing challenges and creating spaces where nature and people can thrive in harmony.


Rewilding is also about the way we think. It is about understanding that we are just one species among many, bound together in an intricate web of life that connects us with the atmosphere, the weather, the tides, the soil, fresh water, the oceans and every other living creature on the planet.


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Grzegorz Lesniewski
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