Description/achievement of initiative
To identify, support and safeguard Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems and their livelihoods, agricultural and associated biodiversity, landscapes, knowledge systems and cultures:
1) Leverage global and national recognition of the importance of agricultural heritage systems and create institutional support
2) Capacity building of local farming communities and local and national institutions to conserve and manage GIAHS, generate income and add economic value to goods and services of such systems in a sustainable fashion
3) Promote enabling policies, regulatory and incentive mechanisms to support the conservation, evolutionary adaptation and viability of GIAHS
4) Share lessons learned, knowledge management and interactive disseminatio
In order to provide systematic support to the conservation and adaptive management of GIAHS, the initiative intervenes at three distinct levels:
1. At Global level, by identification, selection, and promoting recognition of GIAHS
2. At National level, by capacity building in policy, regulatory and incentive mechanisms to safeguard these outstanding systems and use them as sustainability benchmark systems
3. At Local Level, by empowerment of local communities and technical assistance for sustainable resource management, promoting traditional knowledge and enhancing viability of these systems through economic incentives.
The GIAHS Partnership Initiative promotes public understanding, awareness and national and international recognition and support to the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems, in which social, cultural, economic and environmental goods and services provided by the family farmers, smallholders, indigenous peoples and local communities are particularly valuable. The GIAHS Partnership recognizes the crucial importance of the well-being of family farming communities in an integrated approach while directing activities towards sustainable agriculture and rural development. It further seeks to support the present-day resilience of these traditional agricultural systems and thus provide a sustainable legacy for the benefit of future generations
Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer
The GIAHS Initiative is also expected to contribute to sustainable development through:
i. promoting mainstreaming of heritage systems through policy and regulatory reforms and support for systemic and institutional capacity building at national level;
ii. conservation and sustainable management of outstanding traditional agricultural systems through enhancement of conducive agricultural policies and regulations and through support for an integrated approach, capacity building of local institutions and empowerment of local communities;
iii. improving awareness and education among government agencies, local authorities and communities, and other stakeholders;
iv. demonstrating linkages between local livelihood benefits and global environmental benefits through agro-ecosystem approaches across government agencies, local communities, indigenous peoples and the private sector; and
v. disseminating key best practices and lessons among implementing agencies, recipient communities and countries in order to enhance and sustain the overall impact: locally, regionally and on a global scale.
The dynamic conservation approach, based on the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework and agro-ecological approaches, explores and develops novel political, social and economic processes strengthening traditional management systems in order to conserve the biodiversity and cultural values of the ecosystem.
Coordination mechanisms/governance structure
The GIAHS Partnership Initiative consists of:
1. International Steering Committee (ISC)
2. Technical Group (Scientific Advisory Committee)
3. National Steering Committees
4. Participating Member countries
5. Partners and collaborators
Membership is open and voluntary to all governments, including local and regional authorities, and to intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations, academic and research organizations and the private sector, including individuals whose objectives and activities in this regard are consistent with the vision and objectives of the GIAHS Partnership Initiative, and who fulfils the criteria for membership.
National governments (Algeria, Chile, China, India, Japan, Kenya Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkey)
Working with Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Environment and other relevant organizations of national governments including local governments
Working for local people who maintain traditional agricultural systems and landscapes
Working thanks to (GEF, IFAD, BMELV)
UNESCO, CBD, ITPGRFA, UNU, ISESCO, RIHN, MINAM, ODEPA, MOA, MAFF, ASM, INRA, DENR, Roman Forum, Kanazawa University, CET, IGSNRR-CAS, APU, MSSRF, CGIAR, Academes and Research Institutions, and others