Combatting Wildlife Crime in Uganda

This project aimed to strengthen key Ugandan stakeholders’ capacity to detect, deter and prosecute wildlife crime, working with security and law-enforcement agencies in the country.




Main Image Credit Ivana Tacikova / Alamy Stock Photo


Through this five-year project (2015–2020), RUSI partnered with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) and the Natural Resources Conservation Network (NRCN) providing research, analysis and expertise to increase the capacity of Ugandan agencies to detect, deter and prosecute wildlife crime.

Specifically, RUSI work aimed to:

  • Enhance the capacity of the Uganda Wildlife Authority and Financial Intelligence Authority to detect and investigate illicit financial flows linked to wildlife crime.
  • Provide an in-depth political economy analysis on the power and relationship dynamics between the various in-country agencies involved in counter-wildlife crime activity.
  • Conduct detailed research into linkages between wildlife crime, money laundering and the financing of terrorism in the region.
  • Support the facilitation of regional meetings attended by all relevant counter-wildlife crime institutions in Uganda to improve inter-agency coordination and information sharing.
  • Together, these activities were designed to provide Ugandan agencies with a more comprehensive understanding of the illicit financial flows generated by wildlife crime in Uganda.

Main Image Credit Ivana Tacikova / Alamy Stock Photo

Aims and objectives

The goal of this project was to reduce wildlife crime in Uganda. The project aimed to achieve this by strengthening the capacity of Ugandan agencies to detect, deter and prosecute wildlife crime, working directly with the security and law-enforcement agencies, private sector companies and communities living adjacent to protected areas.

Specifically, RUSI enhanced the capacity of the Uganda Wildlife Authority and Financial Intelligence Authority to detect and disrupt illicit financial flows linked to wildlife crime through the provision of targeted, tailored on-the-ground mentorship, under the banner of the National Wildlife Crime Coordination Taskforce. The project also supported operationally-focused regional workshops, with the goal of providing targeted support, enhancing cooperation and allowing effective information-sharing and skills transfer.

RUSI helped the project to ‘Think and Work Politically’ by providing an ongoing political economy analysis of how power and resources are distributed and contested in the Ugandan context, and the implications of this for the proposed interventions under the broader USAID programme.

Project partners

  • The Wildlife Conservation Society

    This project is part of the USAID-funded WCS-led programme ‘Uganda Combatting Wildlife Crime Activity’.

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Project outputs and impact


Review the impact of this project.

USAID/Uganda Combating Wildlife Crime Activity

United States Agency for International Development (USAID)/Uganda Combating Wildlife Crime (CWC) is a five-year activity (2020 - 2025) implemented by a consortium of partners including Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), Natural Resources Conservation Network (NRCN) and The Royal United Services Institute (RUSI).

USAID press release

US Government Announces $21.5 Million Investment in Uganda’s Biodiversity


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