Re-thinking investment in landscapes to aid sustainable development

“If we regard the landscape as the main unit of activity, then we can integrate the uses that make up the landscape and look at supporting its ecosystem services,” says Deborah Bossio, soils research area director with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). CIFOR/Kate Evans

“If we regard the landscape as the main unit of activity, then we can integrate the uses that make up the landscape and look at supporting its ecosystem services,” says Deborah Bossio, soils research area director with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). CIFOR/Kate Evans

As scientists strategize about how best to introduce a holistic, “landscapes” approach to balance tradeoffs between conservation and development, policymakers and practitioners are considering how they can “invest” in landscapes, and whether they can be billed as investment opportunities.

Such topics were discussed at an event hosted by the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems, at the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF).

Around the world, investments are being made in agricultural development, hydropower, mining, and road construction projects, which will affect vast areas of land. Green growth and climate-resilient growth policy agendas are also capturing the attention of large-scale investment programs, primarily for infrastructure.

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