VIII International Conference on Landscape and Urban Horticulture

A major share of the world’s population inhabits cities. Scientific efforts are needed in order to improve the comfort and livability of urban areas. Ecology and technology must synergistically interact to outpace issues associated with the coexistence of biological organisms and man-made artifacts in limited spaces. While urban gardens of any scale greatly contributed in past times to people’s wellbeing, today’s challenge is to make the urban green areas work as an ecosystem.

The VIII International Conference on Landscape and Urban Horticulture invite to Catania all the experts in ecology, agricultural sciences, botany, horticulture, social science, landscape design, zoology, and geography to share and discuss the most recent advances in urban green infrastructure toward more sustainable and livable cities.


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The Joint International Grassland and Rangeland Congress 2021

The theme of the Congress is Sustainable Use of Grassland and Rangeland Resources for Improved Livelihoods. The aim of the congress will be to promote the interchange of scientific and technical information on all aspects of grasslands and rangelands: including grassland and rangeland ecology; forage production and utilization; livestock production systems; wildlife, tourism, and multi-facets of grassland and rangeland; drought management and climate change in rangelands; pastoralism, social, gender and policy issues and capacity building, extension and governance. We look forward to seeing you in Nairobi in 2021. For more information, click the attached Flyer. The International Grassland and Rangeland Congress promote an interchange of information on all aspects of natural and cultivated grasslands and forage crops for the benefit of mankind, including sustained development, food production, and the maintenance of biodiversity. The aim of the International Rangeland Congress is to promote the interchange of scientific and technical information on all aspects of rangelands: research, planning, development, management, extension, education, and training.


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Webinar: Calculating the economic impact of illegal mining

Illegal and unregulated artisanal small-scale gold mining poses a significant threat to ecosystems in the world, including the Amazon. The threat is not only due to the deforestation and degradation caused by the activity, but from the use of mercury in both alluvial and land based mining, which then seeps into both surface and subway waterways, poisoning the water and entering the local food chain via fish. Addressing threats to ecosystems and human health due to unregulated mining requires a multisectoral approach that combines policies, command and control strategies and promotion of sustainable practices.

This webinar will present an innovative tool designed by Conservation Strategy Fund commissioned by the Brazilian Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office. The “Mining Impact Calculator” estimates the monetary value of the social and environmental impact of illegal gold mining activities in the Brazilian Amazon, focusing on deforestation, river silting, and mercury contamination. The tool facilitates law enforcement, encourages public policies, raises public awareness and facilitates mitigation/remediation interventions. The presentation will be followed by a discussion of the benefits and potential applicability to other countries beyond the Amazon region.


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Land-Food-Climate: Climate Resilience through the Right to Food

Taking the perspective of African smallholder farmers and pastoralists who are among the most severely affected by the impacts of accelerated climate change, the discussions will highlight why responsible land governance is a critical link in implementing nature-based solutions that enhance sustainable livelihoods while protecting the environment. By gathering contributions from African and European thinkers, practitioners, and policy makers, the session aims to showcase possible pathways for realising the potential of African smallholder agriculture to not only contribute to the continent’s food security, but also expand climate-resilient livelihood opportunities for millions of unemployed Africans.

The session will conclude by exploring how some of the insights gained can inform the ongoing UN Food Systems Summit (UNFSS) process, and in particular concerns expressed that the Summit may not achieve its fundamental goal of transforming our broken food systems unless it ensures that the perspectives all key stakeholders groups are taken on board in the final outcome.

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Tropical Forest Symposium

Our ONE WORLD depends on forests! At the upcoming COPs in Kunming and Glasgow, the conservation of tropical forests must become a focus of political attention. An appropriate share of climate and biodiversity funding must be dedicated to forests, as they are important carbon sinks. This requires a fair deal between tropical forest countries and the international community. In preparation of the upcoming UN conferences Dr. Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, together with key stakeholders of international forest policy, would like to present and discuss effective approaches to forest protection. Please follow the link in the headline for the agenda and join the conversation via live stream on Wednesday, 8 September 2021, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CEST. The event will take place in German, English and French. Simultaneous interpretation will be provided. During a Q&A session, spectators will have the opportunity to participate in the discussion via chat.

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Cryosphere Forum 2021: Status of research on changing permafrost and associated impacts in the Hindu Kush Himalaya

In the context of sparse permafrost studies in the Hindu Kush Himalaya and significant gaps in our understanding of distribution, thermal state, organic content, and mass dynamics, we are collaborating with Tribhuvan University (TU) to organise this forum on permafrost. As a follow up response to recommendations made during the session on permafrost degradation and GHG emissions during International forum on cryosphere and society: The voice of the Hindu Kush Himalaya, the forum will bring together regional and global experts to exchange knowledge on the region’s permafrost and explore avenues for research collaboration.  The forum will also raise awareness among policymakers on the implications of a changing permafrost for livelihoods, hydrological flows, infrastructure, and ecosystems.


  • Share existing knowledge related to permafrost in the HKH and learn about permafrost related issues in other regions
  • Discuss approaches and methods for permafrost monitoring and disseminate such information to the scientific community in the HKH and among the Regional Member Countries (RMCs)
  • Build capacities of young researchers in the field
  • Establish a network with other interested institutions to collaborate on future permafrost monitoring and analysis
  • Develop efficient communication between knowledge producers and stakeholders to identify needs and directly respond to identified gaps in permafrost research

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Webinar – Integrating Forest and Landscape Restoration into National Forest Monitoring Systems

With the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration in June of this year, the global community is increasing efforts to restore ecosystems. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is among those international agencies leading this movement. As a UN Decade co-lead, FAO is coordinating efforts to monitor progress, identify best practices, and support forest and landscape restoration (FLR). This webinar will showcase recent experiences from Latin American and Caribbean countries working on integrating FLR monitoring into their National Forest Monitoring Systems (NFMS).

In recent years, many countries have developed NFMS. Established NFMS can be strengthened to accommodate data collection from FLR, rather than designing independent monitoring structures. The steps for integrating FLR monitoring into NFMS will be discussed during this webinar hosted by FAO and UN-REDD.

Further, the webinar will mark the launch of the publication “Integrating Forest and Landscape Restoration into National Forest Monitoring Systems.” Based on the Voluntary guidelines on national forest monitoring (VGNFM), this document explores experiences from Latin American and Caribbean countries whose forest monitoring systems require further development in order to integrate FLR monitoring. The new publication further proposes an approach to this process, taking into consideration information requirements and the needs of key stakeholders.

The webinar will not only launch the publication of the same name but provide an opportunity for knowledge exchange among experts in FLR and NFMS. It will also showcase recent experiences from Latin American and Caribbean countries working on integrating FLR monitoring into their NFMS.

*This event will be in Spanish with English translation; recordings will be available in both languages.

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Wetlands Knowledge Exchange

Knowledge exchange plays a vital role in establishing strong links between researchers and research users such as policymakers, governments, non-governmental organisations, media, and local communities to share ideas, experiences, and best practices.

CIFOR-ICRAF’s research on wetlands has had important impacts on policy and science in recent years. As part of our ongoing outreach and engagement efforts, we regularly provide insights and perspectives to the study of wetlands, including mangroves, peatlands, and seagrass meadows, in two-way exchanges with partners and stakeholders.

We therefore cordially invite you to participate in the Wetlands Knowledge Exchange, a digital event hosted by CIFOR-ICRAF to provide updates, perspectives, and recent scientific developments on wetlands research with leading CIFOR-ICRAF scientists. Our aim is to help promote the value of these critical ecosystems in efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Alongside initiatives like the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, CIFOR-ICRAF will present a range of innovative research and solutions to help ensure sustainable management and protection of these vital resources.

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Our world is in crisis!

And the evidence is clear: humans are the cause. From climate change to biodiversity loss, to land degradation and inequalities, our actions are putting life on earth at risk.


Yet the good news is this: since humans are the cause, then surely we can fix it. Just how we’ll do this is the focus of a digital event on 2 September 2021, as CIFOR-ICRAF and partners present solutions to tackle the food system crisis.

Join us and learn more about nature-positive solutions, based on science, that will diversify our food systems, improve their sustainability and increase equitable access to the nutrient-rich food that supports health and wellbeing. Only by ensuring the benefits are fairly shared with everyone can we also ensure that our landscapes are now, and remain, productive.

Hear from a range of speakers, from policymakers to smallholder farmers to researchers, who will highlight ways the world can advance towards a system that makes the wisest use of forests, trees and other healthy landscapes and forge a new alliance on nature-positive solutions.

Join efforts that underscore the crucial role of smallholder agriculture, Indigenous Peoples, local communities, youth and women play in the transition to nature-positive solutions for food production.

2 September

Food, nature and people are the three essential elements of our food system. When these elements are in balance, our food system provides nutritious food and livelihoods and supports natural systems like biodiversity, nutrient and water cycles and a stable climate. Unfortunately, our food system is out of balance, threatening people and communities around the world. To reverse this dangerous trend, we need to implement solutions at scale, quickly. This half-day digital event will show the way forward, by providing actionable scientific evidence to build sustainable landscapes and by connecting with people on the ground to share knowledge and experience and fundamentally transform agriculture and land management. By rebuilding resilient food systems, supporting sustainable use of forests, trees and other healthy landscapes, we can adapt to the crises we have created. Join this event on Sept. 2 to become part of the solution.

12:00-12:05 PM (UTC)

Master of Ceremony Vania Olmos Lau is a Mexican biologist employed as a technical advisor at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in Mexico City. Lau has a particular interest in how agricultural development can work in parallel with nature conservation at the landscape level, and holds a double master’s degree in agroecology and organic agriculture from Wageningen University (Netherlands) in partnership with ISARA-Lyon (France). She has been active with the Youth in Landscapes (YIL) Initiative and other youth organizations, and has field experience with rural communities and conservation organizations in Mexico, Uganda, the Netherlands, France and Paraguay. Lau is now working with public-private partnership promoting good agricultural practices to protect pollinators and native flora within natural protected areas.


Vania Olmos Lau


12:05-12:15 PM (UTC)

Prime Minister Marape, who is also a former finance minister of Papua New Guinea (PNG), will deliver the first keynote address during the digital event Food. Nature. People. The Prime Minister will discuss how the world can move “Towards a greener economy that recognises stewardship of land as a nature positive transformation of development.” This is a cause he has championed and reflects this event’s theme of encouraging bold policy and institutional change to support food system transformation. Prime Minister Marape has earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, a post-graduate Honours degree in Environmental Science, and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Papua New Guinea. He was first elected to Parliament in 2007 and previously worked as Acting Assistant Secretary of Policy with the Department of Personnel Management from 2001 to 2006.


Right Hon. James Marape

Prime Minister of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, Minister for Bougainville Affairs and Minister of Defence

12:15-12:25 PM (UTC)

Bronaugh, who is passionate about the advancement of youth leadership in agriculture, will be discussing the key role of youth in agriculture amid work to transform agriculture, forests and land management in the face of multiple global challenges. She also has a deep interest in food security: in autumn 2020, Bronaugh helped to establish the Virginia Food Access Investment Fund and Program in the U.S. state of Virginia, the first statewide program of its kind to address food access within historically marginalized communities. Empowering communities with decision-making skills is an important theme of this digital conference, which will examine recent research on food systems in the context of working with nature and people. That approach is a key success factor to sustainably manage land and transform food systems. Transformation of agriculture is also vital, given that it is a major driver of climate change while at the same time farmers struggle to adapt to its impacts. Integrated ecological, economic and social principles can help smallholder farming systems move towards greater resilience through diversification, recycling, and improving connections between producers and consumers. But adaption must be driven locally, with solutions led by local conditions and not imposed from outside.


Dr Jewel H. Bronaugh

Deputy Secretary of USDA, United States of America

12:25-12:35 PM (UTC)

Dr Rajiv Kumar is Vice Chairman of the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog. He holds the rank and status of a cabinet minister. Kumar is also Chancellor of India’s Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics. In his keynote address, he will discuss how NITI Aayog has become a leader in Natural Farming and agroecology; how this agro-ecological approach has supported the transformation of agriculture in India; and what further steps and behavioral changes are necessary to avoid eventual social and environmental collapse in the agricultural sector.


Dr Rajiv Kumar

Vice Chairman at NITI Aayog

12:40-01:20 PM (UTC)

Food production and consumption differs from region to region, depending on rainfall, geography, soil and a host of economic, social and cultural factors. If agriculture is to become more sustainable and equitable, it will be critical to establish the policy frameworks that are appropriate for the conditions and circumstances of different regions. This discussion will hear from some of the policymakers who are enabling this critical transition. The value of this approach is underscored by the premise that working with nature and people – including their networks, relationships, solidarity, knowledge of local people – is a key success factor to sustainably manage land and transform food systems.


Gary Juffa

Governor of Oro province Papua New Guinea

Kathleen Merrigan

Professor & Executive Director, Swette Center for Sustainable Food Systems, Arizona State University

Mr Vijay Kumar Thallam

Vice Chair Rythu Sadhikara Samstha (RySS), Special Chief Secretary, Govt of Andhra Pradesh

Christophe Kouame

Regional Coordinator, West & Central Africa, CIFOR-ICRAF

Bahar Dutt

Associate Professor, Shiv Nadar University and Independent journalist

01:20-01:25 PM (UTC)


01:25-01:55 PM (UTC)

Empowering communities with decision-making skills, establishing farmer-centered learning systems and putting monitoring tools into the hands of people on the ground: these are among the many innovations to come out of recent research on food systems. This discussion will feature both scientists and practitioners as they look at the surprises and discoveries in research and science that have emerged and are leading to a food-systems transformation that produces food sustainably, equitably and affordably. Such farming, in accordance with nature, can bring together local and scientific knowledge, in order to focus on the interactions between plants, animals, humans and the environment. This, in turn, can provide nutritious food and sustainable livelihoods while helping to address the negative impacts of conventional agriculture on climate change and biodiversity loss. In addition, there are numerous ignored, under-valued and under-researched plants producing fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains that are often very nutritious and can help diversify the current agricultural system to one that provides more balanced, more nutritious and healthier diets and is less prone to environmental shocks.


Melissa Pinfield

Executive Director, Just Rural Transition Secretariat, Meridian Institute

Cheikh Mbow

Director of Future Africa at the University of Pretoria

Gabriela Lucas Deecke

Director General, CIASPE Mexico

Robert Nasi

Managing Director, CIFOR-ICRAF Director General, CIFOR

Danielle Nierenberg

President and Co-Founder, Food Tank

01:55-02:05 PM (UTC)


02:05-02:45 PM (UTC)

Smallholder farmer initiatives demonstrate some of the fastest changes that are taking place around the world. This panel will feature innovators who are pushing for large-scale transformation of land management for food production. They will present their nature-positive agricultural solutions to the food system crisis. These innovations will be presented alongside sustainable investors who will share insights into how innovative farmers can accelerate their businesses and ideas with financing.


Mr Satya S. Tripathi

Secretary General, Global Alliance for a Sustainable Planet

Tabi Joda

Executive Director, GreenAid

Nafkote Dabi

Climate Change Policy Lead for Oxfam

Chantal Marijnissen

Head of Unit C2 Environment, Ecosystems, Biodiversity and Wildlife, European Commission DG for international Cooperation and Development

Tony Simons

Director General, World Agroforestry (ICRAF) Executive Director, CIFOR-ICRAF

02:45-02:55 PM (UTC)

Alexander Müller is Founder and Managing Director of the ThinkTank for Sustainability (TMG), a former FAO Assistant Director-General and State Secretary for Consumer Protection, Food and Agriculture in Germany. He has extensive experience in global sustainability governance, as Chair of the UN Standing Committee on Nutrition; member of the UN Environmental Management Group; and Lead, Voluntary Guidelines for Responsible Governance of Land.. As our digital event concludes, Müller will outline the next steps that have been identified by our keynote speakers and panellists during Food.Nature.People; and discuss how we can transform the insights and ideas outlined during this event, and the vision presented here, into action on the ground.


Alexander Müller

Founder & Managing Director, TMG Think Tank

Iliana Monterroso

Scientist, Co-Coordinator of Gender and Social Inclusion Research at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)

03:05-03:15 PM (UTC)

Closing remarks


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Eden Festival of Action 2021

The Eden Festival of Action is an environmental action gathering combining practical ecosystem restoration work like tree-planting, with a full line-up of workshops, talks and activities from sustainability experts. The evenings are filled with campfire sessions, storytelling and music from some of South Africa’s finest musicians.

Be part of a growing, global, green movement. Visit for more information or APPLY NOW

Check out the Facebook event page here for announcements, pre-events and competitions.

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