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FROM THE EDITOR

Dear Ecoagriculture Partners,

2005 was an exciting year for Ecoagriculture Partners. We legally established EP as a non-profit and are now collaborating with 77 institutional partners (29 international, 5 regional, and from 21 countries). We developed our Strategic Plan, launched the Outcome Measures Project, formed a Community Facilitation Team to work more systematically with farmer- and community-based organizations, and began planning for activities in Mesoamerica and East Africa . EP also supported community ecoagriculture input into the Millennium Summit, produced several publications from the Nairobi Conference of 2004 and upgraded our website.

We have high hopes and ambitious plans for 2006. Our focus is on supporting ecoagriculture innovators—you!—to become more successful in your work and to scale up your successes. We seek to strengthen networks of innovators, provide new knowledge services and leadership training, and develop methods for ecoagriculture system, market and policy analysis.

To assist us in moving forward, two new Board members have joined EP—Bruce Lloyd, a leader in the International Landcare movement, and Barbara Rose, a leader in communications on agriculture and the environment. Our new EP Fellow, Frank Hicks, has extensive international experience developing and implementing ecosystem-friendly market innovations. Jeff Giller, an experienced land use planner now completing his PhD student at Cornell University, will be working with us on designing agri-environmental payments to support ecoagriculture. Claire Rhodes continues to lead EP's work on the Community Knowledge Service.

There will be many opportunities in the coming year for you to get engaged in EP activities, such as in consultations on the Knowledge Service at the CBD in March in Brazil, development of the Outcome Measures, and regional networks. We look forward to working with you.

Sara J. Scherr, President
Ecoagriculture Partners

Table of Contents

ECOAGRICULTURE PARTNERS UPDATE: (clicking the title will bring you to the full entry)

  1. Barbara Rose and Bruce Lloyd join Ecoagriculture Partners Board
  2. Ecoagriculture Partners at the Millennium Summit
  3. Planning EP Collaboration in East Africa
  4. Planning EP Collaboration in Mesoamerica
  5. World Bank-EP Workshop on Ecoagriculture Outcome Measures
  6. Ecoagriculture Conference Recommendations in Id21 Article
PARTNERS' NEWS:
  1. Alternatives to Slash and Burn Wins 2005 Outstanding Partnership Award
  2. Resource-Conserving Agriculture Increases Yields in Developing Countries
  3. North American Pollinator Protection Campaign Holds Conference
  4. International Council for Science (ICSU) Announces Scientific Networking Strategy for Africa
  5. Katoomba Group Holds Workshops on Payments for Ecosystem Services in Africa
  6. Research Completed on Indigenous Underused Spices in Bangladesh
  7. Rainforest Alliance Announces New Standards for Sustainable Agriculture
  8. Krisoker Saar Debates Pesticide-Testing Policy in the U.S.

ECOAGRICULTURE RESOURCE MATERIALS:

  1. Publications from the Millennium Summit [include WRI-Wealth of Nations, UNEP Environment and Poverty Times]
  2. Bookon Community Dialogue on Meeting the MDGs
  3. Studies Demonstrate Joint Conservation and Livelihood Values of Agriculture in El Salvador and Thailand
  4. FAO Global Agricultural Census with Community Data
  5. Review of Agriculture and Biodiversity Linkages in Central America
  6. Millennium Assessment Sub-Regional Report on Coffee-Growing Region of Colombia
  7. The “Blue Plan”: A Sustainable Future for the Mediterranean
  8. Journal Article on Reconciling Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Integrity
  9. Geo-Referenced Data Sources
  10. Training Manual on Gender, Agrobiodiversity and Local Knowledge
  11. Toolkit on Community Participatory Mapping
  12. National Studies Connecting Poverty and Ecosystem Services in Seven African Countries
CALL FOR PAPERS, PARTNERS, AND PROPOSALS:
  1. WASWC Invites EP to be Guest Members (through March 2006)
  2. Call for Articles for Special Issues of ILEIA on “Agriculture in Transition” and “Participatory Research and Development”
  3. Call for Nominations: National Geographic Society--Buffet Award for Leadership in African Conservation
  4. Call for Research Proposals: Center for Tropical Forest Science
  5. Call for Papers for International Dryland Conference
UPCOMING EVENTS:
  1. Conserving Birds in Human-Dominated Landscapes, American Museum of Natural History, New York City, April 27-28, 2006
  2. Small-scale Forestry and Rural Development: The Intersection of Ecosystems, Economics and Society, Galway, Ireland, June 18-23 2006
  3. EURSAFE 2006, “Ethics and the Politics of Food: 6th Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics,” Oslo, Norway, June 22-23 2006
  4. Gecorev Symposium on Co-management of Natural Resources and the Environment, Saint Quentin, France, June 26-28, 2006
  5. Agrecology Shortcourse, Matagalpa, Nicaragua, July 2-15, 2006
  6. International Conference for Wildlife Management in Amazonia and Latin America, Ilheus, Brazil, September 3-7, 2006
  7. 1st Biennial Conference of the International EcoHealth Association: Forging Collaboration between Health and Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, October 7 th -10 th 2006
  8. 5th International Human Dimensions Workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand, October 13-26, 2006

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Ecoagriculture Partners' Updates

1. Barbara Rose and Bruce Lloyd join Ecogriculture Partners Board

We are very pleased to announce two new members of the Ecoagriculture Partners Board of Directors. Bruce Lloyd is an irrigation dairy farmer at Shepparton in southeastern Australia, having retired in 1996 after 25 years as a Member of the House of Representatives of the Federal Parliament of Australia. Bruce is currently Chairman of the Australian Landcare Council. Bruce will bring valuable experience to Ecoagriculture Partners for our work with policymakers, and rural action networks. Barbara Alison Rose is the Executive Director of Aid to Africa, a unique nonprofit federation of select charities dedicated to addressing the needs of Sub Saharan Africa . Ms. Rose was the founding Executive Director of Future Harvest—a nonprofit organization dedicated to building awareness of the importance of science for food production, the environment, and the world's poor. Barbara will bring valuable expertise on global communications to Ecoagriculture Partners.

2. Ecoagriculture Partners at the Millennium Summit

From 14 – 16 September 2005, over 170 Heads of State convened in New York for the 2005 World Summit, focussed on reaffirming international commitments to the Millennium Development Goals, and up-scaling action towards their delivery. The purpose of two ‘Environment for the MDGs' events, convened on 14 September by the Poverty-Environment Partnership, was to emphasise the need for poverty reduction strategies to be anchored within the framework of environmental sustainability – and ensure environmental issues were given sufficient attention within Summit debate and outcomes. Many EP partners were involved in the activities, and EP (through Claire Rhodes) helped organize the events.

The afternoon Policy Dialogue ‘Investing in the Environment to Fight Poverty' featured three panels: ‘The case for Investing in the Environment to Reduce Poverty; ‘Future Priorities: Building on What Works'; ‘Implications for the 2005 World Summit and Beyond'. 22 distinguished panellists were joined by an equally distinguished audience of over 350 participants, including a number of senior politicians, government officials, and representatives of civil society and intergovernmental organizations. Key issues addressed included: the opportunities and challenges of integrating environmental considerations into economic analysis and policy making; the role of local communities in adopting integrated approaches to delivering the MDGs – particularly reconciling the challenges of reducing poverty while enhancing environmental sustainability; the potentials for following-up 2005 World Summit outcomes with concrete action, particularly within ‘MDG-based national development strategies'. Following the dialogue, over 400 government, UN and civil society representatives convened for the Head of State Dinner: “Celebrating Leadership, Innovation and Action”, opened by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. The dinner served to launch ten major initiatives focussed on taking forward World Summit recommendations.

For further details on the policy-dialogue debate, dinner programme and electronic copies of the PEP background analysis on ‘Sustaining the Environment to Fight Poverty and Achiever the MDGs – the Case and priorities for Action', please see:

PEP website: http://www.undp.org/pei/pepevents.html
Earth Negotiations Bulletin: Detailed coverage http://www.iisd.ca/sd/pei/
UN 2005 World Summit website: www.un.org/ga/59/hl60_plenarymeeting.html

Ecoagriculture Partners prepared a special flyer for the summit on "Ecoagriculture and the MGD's" which can be downloaded at http://www.ecoagriculturepartners.org/documents/MDG.pdf.

3. Planning EP Collaboration in East Africa

During September 2004 and January 2006, Sara Scherr of EP met with partners in Kenya and Uganda to begin planning for knowledge-and-action networks of ecoagriculture innovators in those two countries. Our Community Facilitation Team member from Kenya, Esther Mwaure, organized two meetings with community-based partners there, one with IUCN's regional office. The group began planning for a participatory inventory of ecoagriculture initiatives and peer-to-peer learning exchanges. Joseph Tanui of Landcare-Uganda also convened a meeting with partners there to outline a strategy for network development in that country. EP is making plans to collaborate with the International Livestock Research Institute, the World Resources Institute and local partners to map with ecoagriculture ‘hotspots' in Kenya and Uganda,, building on their excellent mapping of Poverty and Environment. With the World Agroforestry Centre and University of California-Berkeley, EP is organizing its first Ecoagriculture Leadership Course in Nairobi for East African leaders in ecoagriculture in late 2006.

4. Planning EP Collaboration in Mesoamerica

During October and November 2005, Ecoagriculture Partners undertook an initial scoping exercise of ecoagriculture activities within Central America . Institutional mapping work was conducted by Claire Rhodes, kindly hosted by The Nature Conservancy's Costa Rica office (thanks particularly to Maarten Kapelle). Particular focus was placed on identifying landscape- / ecosystem-scale initiatives already underway in Central America, the potential role of payments for ecosystem services in catalyzing transition to ecoagriculture, and opportunities for catalyzing further inter-institutional collaboration amongst EP collaborators in the region. Consultations and presentations on the potentials of ecoagriculture within the region were convened with a number of EP partners – including CATIE, during the 4th Henry Wallace/CATIE conference on ‘Integrated Management of Environmental Services in Human-Dominated Tropical Landscapes'; the Nature Conservancy, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the Rainforest Alliance. Claire and Sara also met with other current and potential EP partners in the region to begin planning collaborative activities in the region in 2006:

5. World Bank-EP Workshop on Ecoagriculture Outcome Measures

On February 22, The World Bank and Ecoagriculture Partners co-organized an all-day workshop to obtain expert input to the conceptual framework for measuring outcomes of ecoagriculture landscapes. This framework, which integrates measures of agriculture, biodiversity conservation and rural livelihoods to enable comparative analysis across sites and over time, has been developed by EP with partners from Cornell University—Louise Buck, Tom Gavin and Jeff Milder, with guidance from the Outcome Measures Project International Steering Committee. The workshop drew 24 senior participants from Conservation International, The Millennium Institute, Rainforest Alliance, the International Finance Corporation, International Food Policy Research Institute, the Rights and Resources Initiative, The Nature Conservancy, USAID, Winrock International, the World Bank, the World Bank Institute and World Resources Institute. EP warmly thanks Karen Luz, Kathy MacKinnon and Claudia Sobrevila of the Bank's Biodiversity Team, for organizing the meeting. Work will continue to plan the Ecoagriculture Outcome Measures Toolkit, thanks to TNC's Parks in Peril program supported by USAID.

6. Ecoagriculture Conference Recommendations in ID21 Article

ID21 Natural Resources on-line newsletter published an article by Claire Rhodes and Sara Scherr on “Producing Food and Protecting the Environment: Priorities for Action at a Landscape-level” based on the 2004 Ecoagriculture Conference recommendations. recent research highlight is now on the id21 website, on “Natural Resources”. You can view this at the following link: http://www.id21.org/nr/n2cr1g1.html.

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Partners' News

1. Alternatives to Slash and Burn Wins 2005 Outstanding Partnership Award

The "Science Award for Outstanding Partnership" of the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research went to the "Alternatives to Slash-and-Burn (ASB) Program" for developing more environment-friendly farming techniques and slowing deforestation. Coordinated by the Kenya-based World Agroforestry Centre, the ASB program is a global partnership of over 80 institutions, conducting research in 12 tropical forest biomes (or biologically diverse areas) in the Amazon, Congo basin, northern Thailand, and the islands of Mindanao in Philippines and Sumatra in Indonesia . Its efforts are directed toward curbing deforestation while ensuring that poor people benefit from nature's environmental services. ASB has developed a wealth of analytical tools and resource and training materials relevant for ecoagriculture. See: http://www.asb.cgiar.org/award.htm.

2. Resource-Conserving Agriculture Increases Yields in Developing Countries

The University of Essex, IWMI, CIMMYT and the Chinese Academy of Sciences recently completed a landmark study on resource-conserving agriculture This study evaluated the extent to which 286 recent interventions in 57 poor countries covering 37 million hectares (3% of the cultivated area in developing countries) have increased productivity on 12.6 million farms while improving the supply of critical environmental services. The average crop yield increase was 79% (geometric mean 64%). All crops showed water use efficiency gains, with the highest improvement in rainfed crops. Potential carbon sequestered amounted to an average of 0.35 tons of carbon per hectare per year. If a quarter of the total area under these farming systems adopted sustainability enhancing practices, we estimate global sequestration could be 0.1 gigatons of carbon per year. Of projects with pesticide data, 77% resulted in a decline in pesticide use by 71% while yields grew by 42%. The study leaders concluded that although it is uncertain whether these approaches can meet future food needs, there are grounds for cautious optimism, particularly as poor farm households benefit more from their adoption. For results of the full study, see: J.N. Pretty, A.D. Noble, D. Bossio, J. Dixon, R.E. Hine, F.W.T. Penning De Vries, and J.I.L. Morrison. 2006. Resource-conserving agriculture increases yields in developing countries. Environmental Science and Technology 40(4): pp 1114 – 1119. The news report on the paper is at:

http://pubs.acs.org/subscribe/journals/esthag-w/2005/dec/policy/cc_sustainable.html

3. North American Pollinator Protection Campaign Holds Conference

Since its founding in 1999, the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC), a science-based voluntary collaboration, has encouraged and supported actions that benefit the health of pollinating species in North America . It provides opportunities for individuals and organizations to affect knowledge, awareness, and behaviors of pollinators. Its members come from the United States, Canada, and Mexico and include private industry, academia, government agencies, non-government organizations, and environmental groups. NAPPC currently has representatives from more than 90 organizations and agencies.

Kimberly Winter, Coordinator for NAPCC, invites interested EP partners to join their efforts. She reported that NAPPC held their Fifth Tri-national Meeting in October of 2005 and enjoyed record attendance. In 2006, the NAPPC Task Forces hope to complete a white paper on Bee Importation Issues, develop an online integrated NAPPC website and bibliographic database, provide pollinator-friendly messages to grocery store chains, refine and distribute environmental education curriculum.  More information can be found at www.nappc.org , or by joining their moderated listserv: http://lists.sonic.net/mailman/listinfo/pollinator

4. International Council for Science (ICSU) Announces Scientific Networking Strategy for Africa

The 28th General Assembly of ICSU which was held in China in October 2005 approved the ICSU's Strategic Plan for 2006-11. Details on this Strategic Plan may be obtained from www.icsu.org . The ICSU Regional Committee for Africa has identified four priority areas which are, (i) Health and Human Well-Being, (ii) Sustainable Energy, (iii) Natural and Human-Induced Hazards and Disasters and (iv) Global Change. Networking around each of the four priority area is under preparation. All scientists from within and outside Africa who are interested in teaming up for the realization of the objectives of each of the four priority areas are kindly invited to register with the Regional Office. The required details are: (a) name, (b) university qualifications and areas of specialization, (c) employer/organization, and (d) reliable electronic mailing address. These details should be sent to : m.pillay@icsu-africa.org and secretariat@icsu-africa.org.

5. Katoomba Group Holds Workshops on Payments for Ecosystem Services in Africa

Forest Trends and The Katoomba Group convened a workshop in Uganda, September 19-22 , 2005 to understand current developments and strategic gaps in developing payments for ecosystem services to a significant scale in Eastern and Southern Africa . Other co-organizers included the National Environmental Management Authority of Uganda, Ecotrust-Uganda, EP and other EP partners. Participants from the private and public sectors, nongovernmental organizations, and community groups in Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Malawi, and South Africa met to take stock of what has already been learned about what can be done effectively under existing conditions in their countries, how to ensure that major equity concerns are addressed, and what directions future policy and investment should take. For more information about the meeting and about activities of The Eastern and Southern Africa Katoomba Group, see www.katoombagroup.org/africa

6. Research Completed on Indigenous Under-used Spices in Bangladesh

Traditionally, people of Bangladesh use many spices with their food. The quantity required for the country's 160 million people is huge; many spices are imported, as local production is not sufficient. Some under-utilized indigenous spice species are produced by local and tribal people, usually grown in their homes to meet their day-to-day demands. To explore their properties and to widen their uses as substitutes of commonly used expensive and imported spices, 6 important indigenous species were studied in the Homestead Cropping and Ecoagriculture Research Center for Sustainable Rural Development (HCERCSRD), Bangladesh . The spices are: Agyajal (Eupatorium sp.), Gennum (Allium sp.), Sugandhi Batali (Persicaria sp), Tonigok (Piper longum), Polao pata (Pandanus sp.) and Sinduri Beez (Bixa orellana). A new study has been completed documenting their habits, habitats, morphological characters, propagation methods and uses. The species chosen grow in homestead areas even in the partially shaded places and require little care. They possess high medicinal value and are easy to grow, propagate and maintain. The spices are grown organically. As non-tillage plantation crops, they have great value for soil conservation. For more information, contact Mohammed Ataur Rahman, HCERCSRD, Mymensingh, Bangladesh at ar_forest@yahoo.com.

7. Rainforest Alliance Announces New Standards for Sustainable Agriculture

The Rainforest Alliance, as Secretariat of the Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN), announces publication of the 2005 version of Standard for Sustainable Agriculture – Sustainable Agriculture Network . This standard is the result of a concerted technical effort by SAN members using the input from an extensive public consultation process and over 10 years of sustainable agriculture auditing experience. Farms seeking certification and farms already Rainforest Alliance-certified will need to comply with the Standard for Sustainable Agriculture – Sustainable Agriculture Network according to the conditions indicated in Application and Transition Policy for 2005 Standard for Sustainable Agriculture – Sustainable Agriculture Network . This policy, copies of the standard and supporting documents, or a summary of the public consultation results, can be obtained from this website:

http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/programs/agriculture/certified-crops/standards.html

Contact any Sustainable Agriculture Network member with questions regarding the standards or their application. Comments or suggestions can also be sent by post to the address indicated above or by electronic mail to agstandards@ra.org.

8. Krisoker Saar Debates Pesticide-Testing Policy in the U.S.

Zakir Md. Hossain and Shaila Shahid of Krisoker Saar (Farmers' Voice) in Bangladesh report about their participation in current debates over policies of pesticide testing in the U.S., which have global relevance. In August 2005, the U.S. Congress passed a law requiring the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish stronger ethical guidelines on pesticides studies involving human subjects, which they commend. However, a proposed new rule would allow EPA to use studies based on intentionally testing pesticides on humans as an acceptable source of data in determining pesticide exposure regulations. Krisoker Saar's concern is that this rule fails to protect the health of experimental subjects, ignores concerns regarding conflicts of interest and continues to allow pesticide manufacturers to independently finance, design and conduct tests on humans. Resources should focus on evaluating the impacts of existing exposures, particularly among highly vulnerable populations, such as workers exposed to pesticides in their jobs; pregnant women, children, and elders; and persons with potentially suppressed immune systems. They recommend reading: Oleskey, Christopher; A. Fleischman; L. Goldman; K. Hirschhorn; P. J. Landrigan; M. Lappe; M. F. Marshall; H. Needleman; R. Rhodes; and M. McCally. 2005. Pesticide Testing in Humans: Ethics and Public Policy. In Environmental Health Perspectives 113:11. http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/members/2004/6522/6522.html . For more information, contact Zakir or Shaila: farmers.voice@gmail.com.

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Resource Materials

1. Publications from the Millennium Summit

“World Resources 2005: The Wealth of the Poor” was published on September 13 of 2005. The resource “details the steps necessary to empower the poor to use ecosystems both wisely and for wealth.” Using examples and case studies, the report covers topics including: aid effectiveness, environment and development, non-governmental organizations, poverty, water resource management and indigenous issues. To view a copy of this document, or order a hard copy, visit http://population.wri.org/worldresources2005-pub-4073.html.

The United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) has also released a publication linked to the Millennium Summit – a new issue of “Environment and Poverty Times.” The paper focuses on the vital role of environment in poverty reduction. It tries to raise critical/constructive voices that point at pitfalls, but also propose solutions. The publication is available online at www.environmenttimes.net.

2. New Book: Community Dialogue on Meeting the MDGs

‘New Strategies for Development: A Community Dialogue for Meeting the Millennium Development Goals' expands upon discussions and recommendations from the Community Commons , the community dialogue space hosted in New York, from 16-18 June 2005. The book highlights the key role of local communities in delivering the MDGs while exploring potential investment and policy options for moving such approaches to scale. Key issues addressed include the role of peer-peer learning; gender empowerment; sustainable financing; ensuring environmental sustainability; fair trade and local enterprise development. Published in time for the 2005 World Summit, the book was designed to draw delegate's attention to the critical need for further investment in locally-driven initiatives as the foundation for national MDG-based poverty reduction strategies. The book can be downloaded from the UNDP website:

www.undp.org/pei/pdfs/CommunityCommons.pdf

3. Studies Demonstrate Joint Conservation and Livelihood Values of Agriculture in El Salvador and Thailand

Two recent studies highlight the need to integrate agriculture and forestry land uses. Andrew Walker of the Australian National University documents the importance for local livelihoods of agricultural activities taking place in community forests in Thailand . He argues that advocates of community forestry rights should also protect households' rights to land for food production. Walker 's concern applies particularly to Asian countries where forestry departments have permanently designated large areas of land as government forest even though they have had no trees for many years and people are planting crops there. The issue also frequently comes up in the context of indigenous territories, community forests, and extractive reserves in Latin America, where the governments have not given enough thought to people's need to grow crops. To get a copy of: Walker, Andrew. 2004. Seeing farmers for the trees: Community forestry and arborealisation of agriculture in northern Thailand, Asia Pacific Viewpoint 45 (3): 311-24, contact: andrew.walker@anu.edu.au.

Meanwhile, Susanna Hecht from the University of California Los Angeles and colleagues at PRISMA (a Salvadoran NGO) evaluated land use in El Salvador . While most studies report that less than five percent of El Salvador is forested, these researchers conclude that relatively dense forest covers 60% of the country, if one also considers forests to include coffee and orchards, hedge rows, urban tree cover, and forests regenerating in abandoned pastures. Such areas provide food and shelter for many of El Salvador 's 520 species of birds, 121 mammals, and 130 reptiles and amphibians, and also protect watersheds and supply forest products. To get a copy of: Hecht, S.B., S. Kandel, I. Gomez, N. Cuellar, and H. Rosa. 2006. Globalization, Forest Resurgence, and Environmental Politics in El Salvador, World Development, Vol. 34 (2), February, contact ysong@princeton.edu.

4. FAO Global Agricultural Census with Community Data

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO) is preparing for the 2010 round of agricultural censuses that will cover the period of 2006-2015. In addition to collecting the conventional structural data at farm level, the censuses will now gather socio-economic data at the community, or village level. The restructured census will help illustrate how much progress has been made towards the Millennium Development Goals. The complete article and links to additional information can be viewed at http://www.fao.org/newsroom/en/news/2005/1000092/index.html .

5. Review of Agriculture and Biodiversity Linkages in Central America

The Nature Conservancy, whose conservation activities increasingly involve collaboration with farmers, commissioned Celia Harvey and colleagues at CATIE to review the relationships between agriculture and biodiversity in Central America. This state-of-the-art study demonstrates not only that agriculture is the single most important threat to biodiversity conservation and the greatest driver of habitat destruction in the region, but also that some agricultural systems and landscapes help to conserve critical biodiversity. The full title is: Harvey, C.; Alpizar, F.; Chacón, M.; Madrigal, R. 2005. Assessing linkages between agriculture and biodiversity in Central America : Historical overview and future perspectives. Mesoamerican & Caribbean Region, Conservation Science Program. The Nature Conservancy, San José, Costa Rica. For a copy of the report, contact Maarten Kapelle, head of this program, at mkapelle@tnc.org.

6. Millennium Assessment Sub-Regional Report on Coffee-Growing Region of Colombia

The “Colombia Sub-global Assessment Report: Ecological Function Assessment in the Colombian Andean Coffee-growing Region” has been published online. The document is the culmination of a self-funded pilot assessment and “presents a summary of the current condition and trends of several ecosystem services, and identifies some consequences of ecosystem changes and their impact on the wellbeing of human populations in these areas.” The assessment, one of 33 stemming from the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA), will be expanded to include “complete trends, scenarios and response options” when funding is available. An overview of the assessment and a link to the document is available at http://www.millenniumassessment.org//en/subglobal.colombia.aspx.

7. The “Blue Plan”: A Sustainable Future for the Mediterranean

The new publication “A sustainable future for the Mediterranean: the Blue Plan's environment and Development outlook” has just been launched in Paris . It focuses on 6 key issues for the 22 countries (430 million people) bordering the Mediterranean : water, energy, transports, urban development, rural areas, coastal areas and sea. This document is rich in maps and statistics. It is published and available for sale in French (Editions de l' Aube, La Tour d'Aigues, France ; contact: Antoine.bertrand10@wanadoo.fr), in English (Earthscan, London, UK ; contact: Jon.raeside@jxj.com), and will be available in Arabic in 2006. For more information, see http://www.planbleu.org/indexUK.html.

8. Journal Article on Reconciling Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Integrity

A recent article summarizes economic and ecological rationales for ecoagriculture. Robertson and Swinton argue that one of agriculture's main challenge for the coming decades will be to produce sufficient food and fiber for a growing global population at an acceptable environmental cost. This challenge requires an ecological approach to agriculture that is largely missing from current management and research portfolios. Crop and livestock production systems must be managed as ecosystems, with management decisions fully informed of environmental costs and benefits. Currently, too little is known about important ecological interactions in major agricultural systems and landscapes and about the economic value of the ecosystem services associated with agriculture. To create agricultural landscapes that are managed for multiple services in addition to food and fiber will require integrative research, both ecological and socioeconomic, as well as policy innovation and public education. For a copy of the article, see:

G.P. Robertson and S.M. Swinton “Reconciling Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Integrity: A Grand Challenge for Agriculture.” Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 3(1) (Feb. 2005).

http://www.frontiersinecology.org/specialissue/articles/Robertson.pdf

9. Geo-Referenced Data Sources

Many new resources are being developed that can be used in planning or assessing ecoagriculture at a landscape scale. GeoNetwork Opensource allows users to easily share geographically referenced thematic information between different organizations. The Main CSI-CGIAR GeoNetwork node is at http://geonetwork.csi.cgiar.org. For more information contact: c.perea@cgiar.org.

Andy Nelson, of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES), thought EP members may also be interested in a set of recent and forthcoming publications of digital soil maps. Currently there are over 3,000 maps covering areas in Africa and Asia . Maps of additional locations will be forthcoming. The scanned maps are available as high resolution jpeg images.  They are preliminary products; the next stage will involve georeferencing and digitizing the images for easier compatibility with GIS/RS software. The maps can be accessed at http://eusoils.jrc.it/esdb_archive/EuDASM/indexes/access.htm.

10. Training Manual on Gender, Agrobiodiversity and Local Knowledge

“Building on Gender, Agrobiodiversity and Local Knowledge: A Training Manual” was produced by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). The training manual focuses specifically on linkages between local knowledge systems, gender roles and relationships, the conservation and management of agrobiodiversity, plant and animal genetic resources, and food security. The manual is divided into five modules, each containing fact sheets, covering key aspects and linkages between agrobiodiversity, gender and local knowledge with short case examples and personalized exercises. It further contains additional trainer sheets for adaptation to users. The key modules are:
•  Introducing key concepts of agrobiodiversity, gender and local knowledge in the context of improved food security
•  The sustainable livelihoods framework as an analytical tool in order to explore the linkages between agrobiodiversity, gender and local knowledge
•  Linkages between agrobiodiversity and gender and exploring the complexity of this relationship from a livelihoods perspective
•  Considering the relationship between agrobiodiversity and local knowledge from a livelihoods perspective
•  A case study in Mali exploring gender, agrobiodiversity and conservation.

The manual is online at: http://www.eldis.org/cf/rdr/rdr.cfm?doc=DOC19926  

11. Community Participatory Mapping Toolkit

G. Rambaldi would like to inform members of a new toolbox that provides information and resources on participatory mapping with an emphasis on Participatory 3-D Modelling (P3DM). This online resource provides an overview of the tools available to organizations who want to implement participatory or community mapping programs. It also provides clarification on many of the terms and technologies used in the field. The toolkit is part of the Integrated Approaches to Participatory Development (IAPAD) website, and more information can be found by visiting http://www.iapad.org/toolbox.htm.

12. Connecting Poverty and Ecosystem Services in Seven African Countries

Ecosystems provide more than the resources needed for material welfare and livelihoods. In addition to supporting all life and regulating natural systems, they specifically provide health and cultural benefits to people. Moreover, their loss is a significant barrier to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals related to reduction of poverty, hunger and disease. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) reported that 15 of the 23 ecosystem services assessed were being degraded or used unsustainably. These studies, prepared by the International Institute for Sustainable Development for the United Nations Environment Programme, provide a preliminary overview of ecosystem services in each of seven African countries, with the corresponding constituents and determinants of well-being related to the availability of these services. Countries examined are Kenya, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. See:

http://www.iisd.org/publications/publication_list.aspx?themeid=5

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Call for Papers, Partners, and Proposals

1. WASWC Invites EP to be Guest Members (through March 2006)

All EP partners and Community of Practice (all of you on the listserv) have been invited to become Guest members of the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation (WASWC) through March 2006. Benefits include access to the organization's online publications such as their quarterly newsletter that covers news concerning soil, land, forest, water, conservation, management, participation; access to thousands of digital photos; hard copies of special publications; and the ability contribute short articles and contact other authors. In addition, EP can publish research and development work in the peer-reviewed JWASWC at no cost. More information is available at www.waswc.org.

2. Call for Articles for Special Issues of ILEIA on “Agriculture in Transition” and “Participatory Research and Development”

ILEIA is looking for relevant input for upcoming issues of LEISA Magazine:

Issue 22.2 June 2006: AGRICULTURE IN TRANSITION Many of the different agricultural systems practiced today are under severe stress and are increasingly failing to meet the needs of the producers. In this issue of the LEISA magazine we would like to examine how farmers manage the transition process towards more sustainable farming systems and how they can be supported by fellow farmers, outside organisations, or external incentives. We would also welcome examples of how institutions have adapted to be able to support these processes better. Editor: Rik Thijssen, email r.thijssen@ileia.nl Deadline for contributions is 1 March 2006 .

Issue 22.3 September 2006: PARTICIPATORY RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT.

Participatory research and development theories and practices related to sustainable agriculture and natural resource management are constantly being updated and improved. For this issue, ILEIA will review recent examples of innovation, adaptation and positive results and how these methods and results can be integrated into the wider context. Please send your experiences related to using participatory approaches in sustainable agricultural research and development. Editor: Karen Hampson, email k.hampson@ileia.nl Deadline for submission of articles: 1 June 2006.

Articles may be about 800, 1600 or 2400 words + 2-3 illustrations and references. You may also suggest possible authors, or send information about publications, training courses, meetings and websites. Editorial support is provided by ILEIA. Authors of published articles are entitled to a fee of USD 75. For authors guide see

http://www.leisa.info/index.php?url=show-blob-html.tpl&p[o_id]=8753&p[a_id]=237&p[a_seq]=0

3. Call for Nominations: National Geographic Society--Buffet Award for Leadership in African Conservation

The National Geographic Society Buffet Award for Leadership in African Conservation is soliciting nominations for its 2006 Award. This award seeks to honor the “unsung heroes” of African conservation. The $25,000 award is intended to support the recipients' ongoing fieldwork while recognizing remarkable lifetime achievements. To obtain a nomination form, contact John Francis at jfrancis@ngs.org . For more info, see www.nationalgeographic.com/conservation .

4. Call for Research Proposals: Center for Tropical Forest Science

The Research Grants Program of the Center for Tropical Forest Science (CTFS) of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute provides opportunities for senior researchers, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate students to utilize existing CTFS Forest Dynamics Plots (FDP) and to conduct research with scientists associated with these plots. The CTFS network of FDPs includes 18 sites in 15 countries. Anyone working directly in a Forest Dynamics Plot (FDP), analyzing data from a plot, or generating complementary data that strengthens FDP research programs is eligible to apply. Projects can be field-oriented, laboratory-based, or analytical, and scientifically, basic or applied in nature. Grants will range from $3,000-$30,000. The CTFS Research Grants Program will make awards for projects three months to three years in length. The next deadline for grant applications is July 28, 2006. For more information on how to submit a proposal visit www.ctfs.si.edu

5. Call for Papers for International Drylands Conference

ICRISAT and ICARDA jointly convene the Desertification, Drought, Poverty and Agriculture (DDPA) Consortium. The DDPA seeks to help the world fight against desertification through international research-for-development in support of the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). In recognition of the United Nations' declaration of 2006 as the International Year of Deserts and Desertification (IYDD), DDPA will co- sponsor a major IYDD UNESCO Science Conference on "The Future of Drylands" that will take place from 19-21 June 2006 in Tunis, Tunisia. The conference website, with detailed call for papers, is: http://www.unesco.org/mab/ecosyst/futureDrylands.htm . Send abstracts by e-mail to sc.drylands@unesco.org , no later than 17 March 2006.

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Upcoming Events

1. Conserving Birds in Human-Dominated Landscapes, American Museum of Natural History, New York City, April 27-28, 2006

The American Museum of Natural History's Center for Biodiversity and Conservation will focus its eleventh annual symposium on conserving bird diversity in the areas most heavily impacted by human activities. This conference will examine new approaches for managing bird diversity in urban, suburban, agricultural, and industrial areas; and explore possibilities for conservation in the face of an increasingly developed and industrialized world. The symposium is sponsored in collaboration with the Mack Lipkin Man and Nature Lecture Series, with additional support is provided by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, National Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Society, the National Park Service, and Hawk Mountain.

For more information, see: http://cbc.amnh.org/birds and http://cbc.amnh.org/symposia/birds. Poster abstracts are due by March 1.

2. Small-Scale Forestry and Rural Development: The Intersection of Ecosystems, Economics and Society, Galway, Ireland, June 18-23 2006

This symposium explores the evolving nature of small-scale forestry and the challenges and opportunities this evolution presents to sustainable rural development. In recent years, the emphasis in management objectives appears to have shifted from intensive, exclusive and singular (timber productivity) to a broader, more inclusive multipurpose approach. Concurrent with changes in the motivations for small-scale forest ownership/management, are the challenges of: ensuring continuity of supply from a disparate source; creating new markets for new forest products; and devising methods for internalising the welfare benefits of healthy and diverse forests for the owners of these forests. The meeting will explore the many issues associated with small-scale forestry and rural development and the implications these issues have for ecosystem health, economic viability and societal well-being. The Symposium will be hosted by the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology in collaboration with COFORD (National Council for Forest Research and Development) and Teagasc (Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority). Information is available at http://sref.info/events/event_11.21a.2005.

3. EURSAFE 2006, “Ethics and the Politics of Food: 6th Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics,” Oslo, Norway, June 22-23, 2006

EurSafe is an independent organization which provides a focal point for those who have a professional interest in the ethical issues involved in agriculture and food supply. The Society, founded in 1999, is interdisciplinary, cross-cultural and non-partisan. EurSafe notes that Ethics and cultural values are a common denominator for peoples' concern about food and food production. Slogans like "from farm to fork", "vote with your fork", or "slow food" express a mingling of political, ethical and cultural values. The challenge to ethics is to relate to these new societal contexts and provide useful concepts for analysis and understanding. The program of the 6th Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics is designed to capture these complexities in their variety through different thematic sub-sections and multi-disciplinary approaches. The extended deadline for Early Bird registration for this international conference: is 20 March 2006. Details about EURSAFE and the conference can be found at http://www.eursafe.org.

4. Gecorev Symposium on Co-management of Natural Resources and the Environment, Saint Quentin, France, June 26-28, 2006

The symposium “Co-management of Natural Resources and the Environment” will be held in June 2006 at the Universite de Versailles in Saint Quentin, France, near Paris . The aim of the symposium is to facilitate exchanges between researchers, field operators, NGOs, and policy makers. More information can be found on www.c3ed.uvsq.fr/gecorev and www.c3ed.uvsq.fr/en/recherche/activites/activites5.htm.

5. Agroecology Shortcourse, Matagalpa, Nicaragua, July 2-15, 2006

The Community Agroecology Network (CAN) and the Agroecology Research Group at the University of California-Santa Cruz announce their 7th Annual International Agroecology Shortcourse in Matagalpa, Nicaragua, July 2-15, 2006 The focus of the course is: “ Agroecology, Community and Action: Integrating Conservation and Sustainable Livelihoods in Rural Landscapes.”  The two-week intensive shortcourse is a synthesis between the science of Agroecology and a Participatory Action-Research. The approach integrates experiential and academic learning through a combination of fieldtrips, lectures, readings and discussions. Coffee cooperatives n Matagalpa, Nicaragua have agreed to share their experiences and offer a living case study. The course will be taught in Spanish, so fluency is required. For updated information about the course, visit the web site at http://www.agroecology.org/shortcourse/index.html,

email course@communityagroecology.net, or contact the course organizer, Dr. Chris Bacon at Tel. 831-459-3619, Fax. 831-459-2867.

6. International Conference for Wildlife Management in Amazonia and Latin America, Ilheus, Brazil, September 3-7, 2006

The VII International Conference for Wildlife Management in Amazonia and Latin America (VII Congreso Internacional sobre Manejo de Fauna Silvestre na Amazonía y Latinoamérica) will be held in Ilhéus ( Bahia, Brasil), September 3-7, 2006. The meeting will include conferences, round tables, thematic sessions with open presentations, poster sessions, symposiums, workshops, pre- and post-congress mini-courses, and adventure trips after the congress. Thematic areas included will be: in situ conservation in protected areas, ex situ conservation and wildlife management, habitat preservation and restoration, methodologies for wildlife management, criteria for sustainable development, applied ethology and wildlife management, physiology and ecology of captive animals, animal production, commerce, legislation and public policies regarding wildlife management, and many other related topics. More information may be found at: www.viicongresso.com.br.

7. The 1st Biennial Conference of the International EcoHealth Association: Forging Collaboration between Health and Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, October 7-10 2006

The EcoHealth Network formed in 2003 as an organization of collaborating consortia, institutions, and individual journal subscribers. The Network promotes collaboration amongst the fields of ecology, health and sustainability. The EcoHealth ONE conference will represent a reformulation of the EcoHealth Network as the International EcoHealth Association. EcoHealth ONE will provide a unique forum to (1) advance emerging, highly interdisciplinary scientific work in this arena, (2) promote the interaction of a diverse audience concerned with sustainable health and environment, and (3) consider how to address challenges in an effective and unified way. Abstracts can be submitted via e-mail, postal mail, or fax until April 15. Any questions or comments regarding the EcoHealth ONE Conference should be emailed to: conf2006@ecohealth.net.

8. 5th International Human Dimensions Workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand, October 13-16, 2006

The International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change (IHDP), and the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research and (APN), announced the Fifth International Human Dimensions Workshop: Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change: Water, Trade, and the Environment to take place 13 to 26 October 2006 in Chiang Mai, Thailand. The workshop will be about the role of institutions in causing and mitigating global environmental problems, its substantive focus will be on water and trade. Researchers, stakeholders and decision makers working in the field of global environmental change with an interest in the workshop theme, both from a scientific and a political perspective, are encouraged to apply. For more information, including the application procedure, visit www.ihdp.org.

 

Additional Upcoming Events, listed in previous issues of this Newsletter, may be found on our website at:
http://www.ecoagriculturepartners.org/events/upcoming.htm

Information on ecoagriculture-related employment opportunities, submitted by our partners, may be found on our website at:
http://www.ecoagriculturepartners.org/resources/employment.htm

An archive of previous issues of this newsletter can be found at http://www.ecoagriculturepartners.org/resources/newsletter.htm

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