Align4LDN: Coherence and alignment among approaches contributing to sustainable management of land and water resources

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    Project Manager :
    Yvonne Walz

    Approaches that sustainably manage land and water resources have been increasingly emerging and gaining importance in recent years. However, how these approaches contribute to desertification, land degradation and drought (DLDD) and the achievement of land degradation neutrality (LDN) and what these approaches have in common or how they differ has not been clearly demonstrated yet. This was recognized by the parties of the UN, which is why they requested the UNCCD secretariat in decision 19/COP.15 para.13 to “conduct an assessment on the coherence and alignment on approaches that may contribute to the sustainable management of land and water resources and which, while not being formerly recognized under intergovernmental frameworks, may further contribute to the achievement of land degradation neutrality and to address desertification, land degradation and drought”.

    Against this background, UNU-EHS has received funding from UNCCD to assess the coherence and alignment among selected approaches. It builds on a similar analysis developed by UNU-EHS in the “AlignSLM” project and considers similarities and differences in the key characteristics (such as goals, principles, techniques, etc.) of the following approaches: agroecology, regenerative agriculture, conservation agriculture, climate-smart agriculture, smart farming, integrated agriculture, rewilding, and forest landscape restoration.

    In addition, the Align4LDN project aims at understanding whether these land management approaches can be considered as sustainable land management (SLM) approaches, as well as whether and how they contribute to the achievement of LDN targets. This will be investigated by assessing each approach against a set of criteria derived from the SLM and LDN frameworks adopted for this project.

    This project will increase the visibility of approaches that contribute to the sustainable management of land and the achievement of LDN targets. Thus, these approaches have a greater opportunity to be recognized under intergovernmental processes and frameworks, adopted in national or international projects, and access funding.

    The research conducted entails literature review, content analysis and stakeholder engagement through interviews and focus groups. Further questions can be directed to Lisa Hartmann (