Solution Cluster 6.1.3
Strengthening Territorial Governance - Cluster Proposition
The aim is to strengthen and support territorial governance—encompassing landscape partnerships, city-regions, indigenous territories and other place-based approaches—to deliver integrated strategies for food systems transformation led by local stakeholders. This goal can be achieved with action to link existing territorial networks; mobilize national-level policy frameworks for multi-level governance; institutionalize programs to support territorial partnerships; generate data and knowledge to inform territorial governance; and innovate financial systems and tools.
About this Solution Cluster
Food systems governance comprises complex, overlapping, multi-sector, -jurisdictional, and -stakeholder forms of decision-making, with varying degrees of autonomy, participation, coordination, competition, and cooperation. To deliver integrated food systems that contribute to all SDGs –especially biodiversity conservation, health, climate change, consumption, dignified livelihoods—requires a common framework for practical, spatially explicit field implementation.
Territorial governance can support these goals by bringing together actors from different sectors and institutions to work in an aligned and coordinated way that is place-based, with a long-term and multi-generational commitment. Diverse, effective models have cropped up all around the world in recent years. However, support for them is fragmented. There is limited recognition of local experience and knowledge, little programmatic support for local partnerships, national governance remains top-down and sectorally siloed, and financial flows bypass partnership platforms and the integrated investment needed for food systems transformation.
A critical mass of actors is in place to finally institutionalize food systems territorial governance. Research and field action have generated an expanding evidence base, implementation toolkits, and experienced practitioners. Territorial, landscape and city-region approaches have been formally endorsed by the UN CBD, UNFCCC, CCD, the Bonn Challenge and the High-Level Political Forum of the SDGs, and in all Action Tracks of the UNFSS. The Global Environment Facility, UNDP, FAO, World Bank, Green Climate Fund, IFAD and the Global Adaptation Fund have large and fast-growing portfolios of integrated territorial and landscape projects.
Business stakeholders have begun to engage, such as the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the Global Agribusiness Alliance, partners of UNDP Green Commodities Community and the Tropical Forest Alliance. CGIAR research institutions are building research programs. The 1000 Landscapes for 1 Billion People initiative is spearheading a ‘radical collaboration’ of organizations worldwide to strengthen landscape, territorial and city-region partnerships. The Global Landscapes Forum and UN Decade for Ecosystem Restoration are framing their global mobilization efforts around integrated landscape approaches.
Territorial partnerships are reaching out to one another for cross-learning and collaboration on food systems, with networks such as National Landscape Networks in East Africa, Australia, U.S.; indigenous territorial networks in Latin America; and Model Forest Networks. Member States and international organizations such as Territorial Perspective for Development (TP4D, with the European Union, UNCDF, OECD, BMZ/GIZ, AfD, FAO and NEPAD) are champions. Aligned initiatives include the Satoyama Initiative for Landscapes and Seascapes, the Asian Local Governments for Organic Agriculture (ALGOA), Green Cities Regional Action Programme for Africa-Green Cities, Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy, Europe, Urban Food Systems Network (led by GAIN/FAO), UN-Habitat Urban-Rural Linkages (URL-GP), the World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies (WOCAT), Consorcio para el Desarrollo Sostenible de la Ecorregión Andina (CONDESAN), Friends of Agroecology, and The Water and Energy for Food (WE4F) initiative. The TP4D, with its recent stocktaking report on territorial approaches to sustainable development and 1000 Landscapes are building bridges among landscape, territorial and city-region development.
Five core sets of actions are recommended to place territorial governance at the heart of integrated food systems transformation:
1) Linking existing territorial networks: The diverse existing networks for territorial, landscape and city-region development should join forces—to share tools, evidence and lessons learned; collaborate on policy recommendations and processes; and mobilize resources jointly. They should collaborate for advocacy and communications with national governments, market actors and others, and link communities of practice. (See 1.20 Foster shared learning on Food System Transformation Pathways.)
2) Frameworks for multi-level governance: National policy frameworks should embrace territorial, landscape and city-region action as a focal level of multi-level food systems governance, structuring policy and government policies to empower and support landscape and territorial partnerships. (See AT2.5. National Food System Action Hubs). Resources are being developed by organizations like UNDP and the International Development Law Organization.
3) Institutionalizing support for territorial partnerships: Government, private sector and philanthropic actors should shift from short-term project support for landscape, territorial and city-region partnerships, to long-term institutionalized support. This would encompass legal frameworks and rights, science and data infrastructure, capacity development for leaders and facilitators, market development, making connections, and mobilizing finance. (AT 3.21 on Strengthening Landscape Partnerships, Solution Clusters 3.1.1 Deforestation-free Supply Chains; 3.1.2 Land-freshwater Nexus, 3.2.3 Transformation through Agroecology and Regenerative Agriculture; and 3.2.6 Indigenous Peoples Food Systems.)
4) Generating data and knowledge to inform collective territorial governance: Data and science support for food systems, such as early warning systems or agroecosystem analysis, should be designed to inform negotiation, planning and policy development by territorial stakeholders, identifying practical interventions to reduce tradeoffs and achieve synergies.
5) Innovating financial systems and tools: Financial programs and innovations are needed to direct public, private and philanthropic financial flows to projects and businesses that deliver the territorial vision and food system transformation strategy. Landscape partnerships can help members to increase returns, reduce or share costs, manage holistic risks, address change across supply chains, and improve the investment enabling environment. Efforts can build on Finance Levers “food finance architecture” for FS transformation, including the brief on financing SDG2, adapted for territorial-scale impacts.
The UNFSS process for Action surfaced a rich abundance of specific solutions for effective territorial governance (see Annex below). Champions for post-Summit action are emerging from, for example, the UNEP Member State Dialogue on Food Systems, the Global Finance Dialogue, the post-UNFSS Member State Support program , the Governance Policy Cluster, the AT Clusters on Localizing Food Systems, the Food Systems Finance Facility and Food Systems Landscape Finance Innovation Hub.
Achieving the integrated food system outcomes for SDGs, for climate change, biodiversity and health, and well-being requires strong governance mechanisms to negotiate, plan, implement and coordinate transformation in every landscape, territory and city-region.
Achieving the integrated food system outcomes for SDGs, including climate change, biodiversity and health, requires strong governance mechanisms to negotiate, plan, implement and coordinate transformation in every landscape, territory and city-region.
Annex: UNFSS Game-changing solutions supporting territorial governance
Governance Cross-Cutting Action Area:
- Cluster on Post-Summit Support to Member States on Food System Pathways Dialogues
- Cluster on Policies for Food System Transformation
Five Action Tracks:
- 1.07 Create a new public-private partnership mechanism to provide the investment and operational capacity needed to improve infrastructure
- 1.10 Leverage women’s tenure security in collectively held lands for equitable and sustainable food systems (Action Track 1 wave 2)
- Solution cluster 1.2: Delivering Integrated Approaches to Enhancing Food System Resilience
- 2.7. Strengthening Accountability through mechanisms that empower governments and civil society to drive change and reward good corporate behaviour
- 3.24. Indigenous peoples’ food systems: conservation and biocentric restoration
- 3.3 Strengthening Indigenous and Tribal Peoples’ Rights to Management of Their Territories
- Considering the impact of human wildlife conflicts on sustainable food production and local communities, and make sure this is managed well – WWF
- Integrating nature-positive production with Microinsurance
- Fund to offer de-risking arrangements to finance investments in sustainable agriculture
- Accelerator Facility to support the transition to sustainable agriculture
- 4.04 Securing Land Tenure Rights for Resilient and Sustainable Food Systems
- 4.06 Establishing or Improving Social Dialogue Mechanisms as Powerful Means of Finding Common Solutions to Problems, Advancing Decent Work and Social Justice
- 4.9 Indigenous Peoples’ Trust Fund
- 4.16 Agri-SME Business Development Platform: The First Global Multi-Stakeholder Engine for Inclusive and Equitable Agri-Value Chains
- Action Area 4.3: Localizing Food Systems
- Solution Cluster 4.3.1: Promoting Integrated Food Systems Policies, Planning, and Governance (Includes solutions 1, 2, 10, 14)
- Solution Cluster 4.3.2: Promoting Inclusive Financial Investments in Food Systems
- Solution Cluster 4.3.2: Supporting Local Food Actors
- Solution Cluster 4.3.4: Promoting Economic Diversification and Economic and Social Inclusion
- 5. Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (IPCC like body on food & food systems). (GLOPAN, Global Panel on Agriculture, Food Systems and Nutrition)
- 5. Promote at national, regional and global level the use, adoption and adaptation of the CFS negotiated policy convergence products which all reflect the AT5 approach (FAO, PSM-CFS)
- 5.20. Water-Food-Energy Nexus & sustainable water management
- 5.21. Global Food Security Analysis and Monitoring Platform
- 5.24. Smallholder Early Warning network to help protect against One Health threats
- 5.27. Strengthen government capacity at all levels to proactively reduce, to understand, mitigate and manage risks and strengthen policies to reduce humanitarian needs & socio-economic losses
- 5.28. Increase access to finance, particularly for smallholders and women, with risk management
- 5.64. Inclusive and ethical development pathways for resilient food systems
- 5.69. Landscape restoration focused on watershed management units
- 5.72. Adaptation to Climate Change, water management & environmental resilience