August 2012

Workshop on Sustainable Marine and Coastal Resource Management in the Asia-Pacific in the Context of International Conservation Targets
10 September 2012 (IUCN World Conservation Congress, Jeju, Republic of Korea)

Convened by the UNU-IAS Traditional Knowledge Initiative, in conjunction with Birdlife International, Center for Regional Sustainability Initiatives (CRESI), Sophia University (Japan), Ministry of Environment (Japan), University of Victoria (Canada) and North Australia Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance (NAILSMA), this workshop will explore how bottom-up, community-based and co-management approaches utilizing local and indigenous knowledge  and other means can contribute to meeting international biodiversity targets, including Aichi Biodiversity Targets 6 and 11 on sustainable fisheries, marine protected areas (MPA) and area-based conservation. The workshop will also explore how traditional and blended management systems have been scaled up and combined with MPA approaches, and how they can enhance the resilience of ecosystems and coastal communities, including their ability to adapt to change. In exploring these themes, the workshop will focus on linkages between sustainable use and conservation, as well as cultural connectivity of area-based management across the Asia-Pacific. Read the UNU-IAS TKI release …

New Publication: Indigenous Peoples and the Green Climate Fund – A technical briefing for Indigenous Peoples, policymakers and support groups
FFP press release, 23 August 2012

LONDON, UK: On the occasion of the first Board meeting of the Green Climate Fund, Forest Peoples Programme (FFP) and Jaringan Orang Asal Se-Malaysia (JOAS) have published a report titled Indigenous Peoples and the Green Climate Fund – A technical briefing for Indigenous Peoples, policymakers and support groups. The report summarises some key issues relevant for indigenous peoples, building on statements and policy platforms adopted by Indigenous Peoples’ Caucuses. In particular, the report draws attention to the need for the Green Climate Fund to improve indigenous peoples’ participation in governance, adopt stronger safeguards and facilitate direct access to financing for climate change response actions developed and implemented by indigenous peoples. The report also provides a detailed overview and analysis of the process that led to the setting up of the Green Climate Fund and is meant to be an informative tool for indigenous peoples and other actors interested in the Fund’s activities. It identifies a number of key areas in which the Fund must act to better support the participation of indigenous peoples, including: designation of indigenous peoples’ active observers; safeguards and indigenous peoples’ rights; and direct access to funding. Read the press release … Download the report [pdf] …

Traditional Knowledge and Plant Genetic Resources Guidelines
Southern Africa Network for Biosciences, NEPAD, August 2012

These guidelines were developed as a result of growing concern of a lack of policies and laws in several countries of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) to govern the use of traditional knowledge, biological resources and benefit-sharing. They include suggestions for actions related to policies, legislation at national and regional level and further action to be taken by institutions, both public and private. The actions suggested for implementation by national governments and regional bodies focus on harmonization and coordination, which includes domestication of appropriate international agreements, setting minimum standards, updating existing policies and legislation, fostering bilateral and multilateral agreements, developing cross-border biodiversity management plans, establishing monitoring and management structures, streamlining duties of established offices and setting up coordinated flow and exchange of information. The guidelines also suggest actions to support links and collaboration. They address: traditional knowledge, including identification and documentation procedures; access and benefit-sharing; farmers’ rights; intellectual property rights; stakeholders, including among others community institutions; and cross-cutting issues, including capacity building, advocacy and awareness, and evaluation, monitoring and reporting. Download the guidelines [pdf] …

Traditional Ecological Knowledge in Europe: Status quo and missing links of empirical evidence
Janis Hoberg, Elisa Oteros-Rozas and Tobias Plieninger
IUCN CEESP/SSC Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group SULiNews Issue 2 (August 2012)

In this article, the authors notice that while many empirical studies have been carried out in indigenous communities in developing countries, evidence on traditional ecological knowledge in developed countries, with more homogenous populations and fewer indigenous communities is scant, which presents a major barrier to the consideration of traditional ecological knowledge in environmental policy processes. The newly established Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), which intends to complement scientific knowledge by consideration of the rich diversity of local and traditional ecological knowledge, could become an important starting point for a different environmental policy in Europe. Read the article …

Perú otorga títulos para proteger conocimiento indígena
SciDev.Net, 27 August 2012

LIMA, PERU: The Peruvian government has recently granted 453 registration certificates of biodiversity-related, collectively-held traditional knowledge to three Amazon communities belong to the peoples Bora and Ocaina. Since the adoption of a law on intellectual property aiming to protect traditional knowledge in 2002, 885 such certificates have been granted, 492 of which relate to confidential TK. The certificates granted to the Bora and Ocaina communities relate to the use of more than 120 Amazon plants in food and agriculture, medicine, cosmetics and color dyes. Read the article [in Spanish] …

Strengthening the socio-ecological resilience of forest-dependent communities: The case of the Hani Rice Terraces in Yunnan, China
Hongyan Gu, Yuanmei Jiao, Luohui Liang, Forest Policy and Economics vol. 22, September 2012,

Based on a case study of the Hani Rice Terraces — a mosaic agricultural landscape composed of forests, villages, rice terraces and water system in Yunnan, China, this article examines the issues pertaining to tourism development and its impact on the relationship between the Hani Rice Terraces and their custodian communities. It also discusses measures to strengthen the resilience of rural communities to adapt to changing socio-economic conditions. Drawing on a comparison between the Hani Rice Terraces and the Ifugao rice terraces, this article proposes an endogenous development strategy aiming at harnessing tourism for poverty reduction and enhancing community custodianship. Read the abstract …

Video Series on TK & Climate Science
UNU-IAS TKI, 16 August 2012

DARWIN, AUSTRALIA: Launched by the UNU-IAS Traditional Knowledge Initiative, this video series focuses on some of the key links between traditional knowledge and science regarding climate change. Relevant topics include: land use and adaptation; energy; and REDD+. Read the news release … Watch the video on land use and adaptation … Watch the video on energy … Watch the video on REDD+ …

United Nations Indigenous Peoples’ Partnership (UNIPP): Strategic Framework 2011-2015

United Nations Indigenous Peoples’ Partnership (UNIPP): Delivering as One UN at the country level in partnership with indigenous peoples

The UN Indigenous Peoples’ Partnership (UNIPP) five-year strategic framework outlines UNIPP’s thematic areas of focus for the realization of indigenous peoples’ rights, including: legislative review and reform; democratic governance and strengthening of indigenous peoples’ institutions; access to justice, and the recognition and strengthening of indigenous customary law and justice systems; access to land and ancestral territories; conflict prevention, consultation, participation, benefit-sharing and dispute resolution around ancestral land and use of natural resources, also in the context of extractive industries; and access to education and health. UNIPP seeks to further these themes through: capacity development; establishment or strengthening of consultative and participatory mechanisms; plans to carry out capacity development; support of pilot initiatives and countries; and support of knowledge networks and sharing of important experiences.

The UNIPP brochure describes the genesis, governance and guiding principles of UNIPP and its Multi-Partner Trust Fund, highlighting the initiative as a response to UNDRIP Article 41, which calls on the UN system to contribute to the full realization of indigenous peoples’ rights through the mobilization of financial cooperation and technical assistance. Download the UNIPP strategic framework [pdf] … Download the UNIPP brochure [pdf] …

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