Overall, researchers and policy makers are in agreement: sound decision making needs robust science. The need for fruitful exchange between the two communities seems particularly strong in when decisions affect landscapes and the people that depend on them: not only do these decisions involve different stakeholder groups – like local communities and regional or national-level institutions – but they also affect different sectors, such as agriculture, forestry and energy.
Yet, both researchers and policy makers regularly highlight instances in which this exchange is not working. Scientists claim that policy makers are not accessible and do not consider scientific evidence, while policy makers point to unclear messages and convoluted, inaccessible data.
In two steps, speakers at this plenary session will build a bridge between the communities, focusing on the role landscapes play in achieving SDGs and new climate goals:
- Speakers will start with concise individual presentations, highlighting big ideas for landscape decision making, during which they draw on examples from their work.
- This will be followed by an interactive panel discussion involving the audience in which the moderator and speakers answer, but also raise, critical questions.
Key questions addressed
- How useful is the landscape approach for achieving the new climate and development goals? What are concrete suggestions for policy and practice?
- How does climate action in landscapes work – from the local (jurisdictional level) to the atmosphere?
- What is a landscape anyway and how do we analyze changes over time? What do they tell us about future trajectories?
- Whose landscape? (Governance, stewardship and potential for positive change)
- How can policy makers – and their institutions – acquire “environmental intelligence”?