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 Strengthening the Social Impacts of Sustainable Landscapes Programs: A Guide for Practitioners

Wongbusarakum, Supin; Myers Madeira, Erin; Hartanto, Herlina

Strengthening the Social Impacts of Sustainable Landscapes Programs: A Guide for Practitioners
Full-size office print version of the guidebook is available here (35mb PDF).
Watch the introductory video below.

Wongbusarakum, S., Myers Madeira, E. and H. Hartanto. 2014. Strengthening the Social Impacts of Sustainable Landscapes Programs: A practitioner’s guidebook to strengthen and monitor human well-being outcomes. 107 pp.

An estimated 1.6 billion people around the world depend on forests for their livelihoods. Three hundred fifty million of these people, including 60 million indigenous peoples, live in or adjacent to forests and are almost wholly dependent on forests for their subsistence and income needs (World Bank 2004). Each year, tens of millions of acres of forests, grasslands and other important habitats are cleared for agriculture and other development. In many of these places, people whose lives are inextricably linked to the lands and waters around them will face unprecedented changes that threaten their livelihoods and well-being. In order for any conservation work to succeed in these regions, it must focus on developing sustainable landscapes that benefit people as well as nature. Such projects must conserve critical ecosystems, align with existing development plans, contribute to economic opportunities, address the large-scale drivers of habitat loss and improve the well-being of people who feel the day-to-day impacts of any land-use program.

This guidebook focuses on strengthening the social outcomes of sustainable landscapes programs through their design, implementation and monitoring plans. It provides guidance on how to develop and strengthen strategies that achieve both conservation and development goals while cost effectively measuring and monitoring these social impacts.  In doing so, it highlights the critical importance of understanding and identifying the key strategies that deliver multiple benefits for both people and conservation.

This guide was developed for conservation practitioners including NGOs, governments, and private sector representatives who are implementing sustainable landscapes programs. It is designed to help practitioners take a systematic approach to developing and monitoring these strategies. We expect REDD+ practitioners will find the guide particularly useful, as there is specific discussion about how the approaches presented can be used in REDD+ programs.

The guidebook is the culmination of two years of work by The Nature Conservancy’s Forest and Climate Program, Indonesia Terrestrial Program and Central Science Division. The Indonesia Terrestrial Program helped to develop and refine the tools and approaches in the guide, and provided critical feedback on what is needed by practitioners and what works in practice. The guide is currently being piloted by The Nature Conservancy’s team in Brazil working in São Félix do Xingu.
Report Cover Image: © Mark Godfrey
Video and photography: Erik Lopes, Rafael Araujo, Nick Hall, Peter Ellis, Haroldo Palo Jr., Reinaldo Lourival