Major Research Project

IPBES: Africa Assessment and Scenarios and Modelling

Project Leader(s): Dr. Laura Pereira, Prof. Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs

The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is the intergovernmental body which assesses the state of biodiversity and of the ecosystem services it provides to society, in response to requests from decision makers. Established in 2012, IPBES is placed under the auspices of four United Nations entities: UNEP, UNESCO, FAO and UNDP and administered by UNEP. As part of their governmental mandate to provide scientific information in response to requests from policy makers, IPBES is to perform regular and timely assessments of knowledge on biodiversity and ecosystem services and their interlinkages at regional and subregional levels.  Under this deliverable the Platform will prepare a set of regional and subregional assessments, the overall aim of which is to assess the status and trends of biodiversity and ecosystem services, the impact of biodiversity and ecosystem services on human well-being and the effectiveness of responses, including the Strategic Plan and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets and the national biodiversity strategies and action plans. The assessments are also to identify the need for capacity, knowledge and policy support tools.

In a workshop at UNESCO in August 2014, the scope of the regional and sub-regional assessments was defined and in January 2015 the third session of the Plenary approved the launch of four regional assessments – namely for Africa, for the Americas, for Asia Pacific, and for Europe and Central Asia – together with a general scope common to all of these regional assessments the geographical scope of each of the proposed regions, and regional specificities. The CST has two members who were nominated and selected by the MEP to take part in the African regional assessment, which will be finalized in 2018. Oonsie Biggs is a lead author for Chapter 5: Integrated and cross-scale analysis of interactions of the natural world and human society and Laura Pereira is a lead author for Chapter 6: Options for governance, institutional arrangements and private and public decision‑making across scales and sectors.

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