The Wildlife Research and Training Institute (WRTI) is a state Corporation established under Section 50 of the Wildlife Conservation and Management Act No. 47 of 2013 (WCMA 2013). WRTI headquarters are in Naivasha, Kenya. It has field centres and sub-centres in key wildlife conservation areas across the country established to address specific agro-climatic research thematic areas. These are:
The establishment of WRTI was informed by the need to provide coordinated wildlife research and comprehensive data to inform scientific based solutions that inform policy decisions, management approaches, and create innovative wildlife-based products and services in the wildlife sector. It was further informed by the need to enhance capacity in wildlife conservation and management through training.WRTI was operationalised through the gazettement of the Board of the Institute on 17th July, 2021 and the appointment of a Director/CEO to oversee the transition process.
WRTI was operationalised through the gazettement of the Board of the Institute on 17th July, 2021 and the appointment of a Director/CEO to oversee the transition process. It has since obtained all requisite approvals by relevant Government agencies to operate as a State Corporation. It started operating as an independent institution from 1st July 2021. The Executive Order No. 1 of 2023 issued in January, 2023 on the Organization of Government places WRTI under the State Department for Wildlife in the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Heritage
A center of excellence for coordinated research, innovation and training for effective wildlife conservation and management.
To provide accurate scientific data and skilled manpower for sustainable wildlife conservation and management.
The object and purpose for which WRTI was established is to coordinate and undertake wildlife research and training in the country in accordance with Section 51 of the WCMA 2013. Its functions are listed in Section 52 of the same Act and include all forms of wildlife research and related emerging issues as well as enhancing capacity in wildlife conservation and management through training. Further, Section 59(1) of the Act provides for WRTI to granting wildlife research permits, and Section 60(1) to establish a comprehensive wildlife data base in collaboration with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and other relevant lead agencies & stakeholders.
Further, WRTI functions also include establishing and operating Forensic andGenetics Laboratories, providing scientific/technical support on implementation of wildlife related Multilateral Environment Agreements (MEAs) and carrying out research related to bioprospecting.