We’re finding new ways to balance the interests and rights of industry, community and government stakeholders and to bring together science, Indigenous and local knowledge, for sustainable stewardship of landscapes and seascapes.

The challenge

Collaborative stewardship of landscapes and seascapes with diverse human communities

Landscapes and seascapes are used and managed by many community groups with different interests in and knowledge about natural and cultural values.

 ©M. Esparon

In some cases, these values focus is on biodiversity, bringing attention to viewing nature in landscapes. In others, biocultural diversity is the focus, bringing attention to viewing how people, their cultures and landscapes interact.

These differences are further complicated by rapid environmental and social change—for example, global warming, new technologies and loss of key habitats—which poses risks that often need integrated responses.

Too often, we find communities plagued by conflicts, poor access to knowledge, implementation chasms between scientists and practitioners, and lack of strategies to work together in the face of rapid change.

In order to enable sustainable environmental stewardship, we need to overcome these barriers and find ways to bring diverse interests together.

Indigenous knowledge has produced sustainable stewardship of lands and seas for thousands of years. Bringing this knowledge together with science and innovation will help meet these challenges.

Our response

New forms of collaboration to respond to rapid environmental and social change

We’re supporting new ways of working that bring together different stakeholders’ and mobilise scientific, Indigenous, local and practitioner knowledge to find common solutions.

Our work has led to innovations in Indigenous and joint managed protected areas, community conservation for whole-of-landscape stewardship, and integrated knowledge platforms.

We are building understanding of biocultural diversity through assessment and monitoring, and contributing to the development of social-ecological systems science globally. 

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