Ecosystems Governance in Biosphere Reserves and the importance of Cultural Practices in Ecosystem-based Adaptation

Two CEM Sessions at the Conservation, Communities and Livelihoods, Halifax, Canada, May 27-30, 2018

Communities, Conservation and Livelihoods Conference

CEM members were present at the Conservation, Communities and Livelihoods Conference that was organized jointly by the Community Conservation Research Network and CEESP-IUCN. The meeting attracted people from over 50 countries, many of them being indigenous peoples. The presentation sessions and discussions were very productive and brought together nations in a very positive manner. Two sessions were organized by CEM.

The first one was presented by Liette Vasseur (Ecosystem Governance (EG) Group), Esperanza Arnes (Biosphere Reserve (BR) Group) and Laura Loucks (from Clayoquot Sound UNESCO BR) and aimed to discuss the importance of Ecosystems Governance in Biosphere Reserves and what ingredients may be important to consider enhancing collaboration, conservation, and community livelihoods. It was clear that there are opportunities but also barriers. Suggestions included matching developing and developed BR for greater sharing of practices, for example. 

The second session was presented by Liette Vasseur, Pam McElwee (Cultural Practice Group) and Darwin Horning (North America Region) on the importance of cultural practices in ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA). Examining examples of EbA and planning, the discussion underlined the importance to considering cultures and values that indigenous peoples may have on the location where projects are being implemented. Like in the first session, the discussion underlined the importance to better understand the issues and challenges that communities are facing when dealing with EbA planning and integration of cultural practices and knowledge can greatly help enhance sustainability. 

The CCL conference also held a special event: a lunch to celebrate the 70th anniversary of IUCN. Over 80 participants coming from different commissions celebrated in a way to look at 70th more productive years, despite some challenges, like any other organizations.  

For more information contact Liette Vasseur


Report prepared by Liette Vasseur, Laura Loucks, Darwin Horning, Pam McElwee, and Esperanza Arnes

Special thanks to Nail Dawson who was a volunteer note takers during the sessions.

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