Solution Cluster 3.3.2

Aligning Data, Stakeholders and Evidence for Nature-Positive Production

Faced with a matter of years to protect, sustainably manage, and restore our landscapes and the food systems they support, we urgently need to make the right decisions about investments as well as promote the right practices and approaches in the right places. To achieve this, we need to produce accurate, timely, consistent, and reliable data that is easily available for decision makers and stakeholders to ensure approaches and actions are driven and supported by the best available information from multiple sources including science, practice, and local knowledge.

We seek a future where all stakeholders involved in the protection, sustainable production, and restoration of landscapes, from local to national levels, can readily access, and engage with high quality, fit-for-purpose data to inform decisions and actions. Data and stakeholder engagement can also be used to measure progress and enable adaptive management for sustainable landscapes and food systems. At the local community level, multiple strands of evidence from a diversity of sources can generate a comprehensive picture of deforestation, restoration drivers, barriers and impacts and outcomes for communities and landscapes.

About this Solution Cluster

There are ever-increasing demands on land; the need to produce food, fiber and fuel, whilst protecting, sustainably managing and restoring the ecosystems that support production and a healthy environment. Restoring food systems as a part of the restorative continuum1, can link broader restoration commitments (e.g., the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration) and sustainable and nature positive production.

Political resolve and financing commitments for nature positive production have increased considerably over the past decade, particularly linked to landscape restoration, as demonstrated by the Bonn Challenge on forest landscape restoration (2011), the Paris Climate Agreement (2016), the declaration of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2019) and the Great Green Wall Initiative. Associated pledges now add up to more than 1 billion hectares (an area the size of the United States of America) of restoration commitments by governments, 1 trillion dollars market capitalization of companies with deforestation commitments, and 1 billion dollars of financing for tropical deforestation reductions. Accurate and timely data aligned to stakeholder needs and evidence, on the state and change of landscapes, is critical to move from ambitious political commitments to sustainable landscapes and food systems.

The Solution Cluster is needed to align quality data, stakeholders and evidence – bridging the disconnect between data and various stakeholders with both practice-and science-based evidence. Aligning stakeholder engagement and data can bring transparency and feed a process that supports successful interventions and empowerment at the local, national, and global level while also attracting needed investment.

A wealth of new global land cover and other monitoring solutions and transformational technologies are now available, however new data needs to be tested, validated, understood, and developed to be fit for purpose. Importantly, the data needs to fulfill stakeholder needs, and it is critical to include stakeholder engagement for relevant landscapes across sectors and scales. Insufficient coordination and engagement has led to a proliferation and fragmentation of monitoring platforms, data and methods, with insufficient linkage to stakeholders and evidence, which impedes action.

1 Gann GD, McDonald T, Walder B, Aronson J, Nelson CR, Jonson J, Hallett JG, Eisenberg C, Guariguata MR, Liu J, Hua F, Echeverria C, Gonzales E, Shaw N, Decleer K, Dixon KW. 2019. International principles and standards for the practice of ecological restoration. Second edition. Restoration Ecology DOI:10,1111/rec.13035

Political resolve to achieve sustainable landscapes combined with advances in global monitoring solutions, transformational technologies, and data availability create the conditions to move from ambition to action by including decision makers, stakeholders, and evidence in the process.

We will explore the conditions necessary to move from ambition to action to support sustainable landscapes based on data, monitoring systems and platforms, stakeholder engagement, and evidence. We will bring together stakeholders across multiple scales to reflect on the monitoring data and other practice-based evidence to ensure reflection and adaptation through constant feedback loops, and to incorporate systems thinking and approaches.

The Solution Cluster will leverage several existing efforts on monitoring, stakeholder engagement and evidence such as the Task Force on Monitoring for the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration1, facilitated by FAO, which brings together 100 organizations and offers an overarching coordination for monitoring through the Framework for Ecosystem Restoration Monitoring (FERM) to improve data access and transparency. Other complementary efforts, represented in the Solution Cluster, are IUCN’s Restoration Barometer, the Global Restoration Observatory, and World Resources Institute’s Land and Carbon Watch. The Cluster will also build on existing efforts, and mandates of the Rio Convention Secretariats (UNFCCC, UNCCD, CBD, Ramsar) and Land Degradation Neutrality indicators and targets. The Solution Cluster will also build on established and successful evidence and stakeholder engagement approaches such as Stakeholder Approach to Evidence Based and Risk Informed Decision Making (SHARED)2. 1 FAO. 2021. Briefing note on the Task Force on Monitoring for the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration. 2 Neely CL, Bourne M, Chesterman S, Vågen T-G, Lekeram V, Winowiecki LA, Prabhu R. 2021. Inclusive, Cross-Sectoral and Evidence-Based Decision-Making for Resilience Planning and Decision-Making in a Devolved Context. Eur J Dev Res (2021).

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