Conservation Influencers

Nakawe Project

Mataro, Barcelona

The Nakawe Project based in Barcelona, Spain, has been in existence since 2015. It describes itself as a small group of professionals from different sectors committed to the environment and humanity, who share a passion for the ocean. But the majority of its work is focused almost exclusively on just one species, sharks, as part of its Game Over Fishing campaign.

According to Nakawe’s website, Game Over Fishing aims to stop ‘the unsustainable, unmanaged harvesting of shark species all over the world’. One of its core aims is to persuade the public to reduce shark meat consumption. Furthermore it campaigns to impose shark fishing bans on, what it calls, ‘highly vulnerable species’, as well as to place minimum size catch limits on sharks meant for consumption. For less threatened sharks, it wants to reduce bycatch (accidentally caught sharks) and to protect their habitats.

Arguably, the most impactful aspect of Nakawe’s work involves romanticizing sharks and their habitats. To this end they invest a considerable proportion of their financial and manpower resources in producing emotive films. These films showcase Nakawe’s activists swimming with sharks and, sometimes, unashamedly harassing local fisherfolk in exotic far-off places such as Cocos Island off the coast of Costa Rica. Nakawe’s films have been a major hit with the world’s media which welcomed the campaigning content while making no attempt to portray both sides of the story or to warn the public that Nakawe is a biased filmmaker.

At CITES’ CoP-18, Nakawe issued a press release that celebrated the controversial inclusion of more than 20 million mako sharks in appendix II. Its press release stated that the ‘fight to protect mako is absolutely NOT over’. Makos still need more protections, they said, and ‘we need to make sure that people stop consuming mako shark meat and stop collecting them as souvenirs’. 


Regina Domingo is the Campaign Leader. She resides in Baja California Sur, Mexico and some people refer to her as the ‘Queen of sharks’.


Not disclosed. 


Not disclosed. 

About the directory

Conservation Influencers is a searchable directory of the animal activist, environmental and ecological lobby. It examines the history, mission, methodology and reputation of NGOs to assess their impact on the global conservation cause.


Franz Weber Foundation

From 1990 until 2015, Franz Weber Foundation (FFW) managed the Fazao-Malfakassa National Park in Togo, which was, according to an in-depth investigation by Duke University, ‘established by forcing the local communities off their land and without taking into consideration their point of view’. That same study cited convincing evidence from reports published in 1990, confirming that competition for land use was already ‘creating conflict between the local communities and park managers’. In 2015 Togo refused to renew FFW’s contract because, the report says, ‘local communities were still excluded from the management of the natural resources of their land’ and FFW had ‘failed to fulfil its contract’. Franz Weber Foundation plays a major role within CITES because it funds and manages from Switzerland the African Elephant Coalition (AEC), which represents 32 African range states, some of which have barely any elephants and others none at all. Contrary to the wishes of the range states in Southern Africa, which manage most of the world’s wild elephant populations, the AEC at CITES’ CoPs repeatedly tables proposals to put all of the world’s elephants in appendix I. And the AEC uses its voting power to keep in place prohibitions on ivory sales and all other trade in elephant-related derivatives, including skins and hair, which Southern African nations wish to legalise.