Online MOOC: training for better investments in landscapes
Achieving the SDGs and building healthy, productive and sustainable landscapes calls for bold innovations in and around landscapes. But how to fund these innovations, and how to get the right finance to those landscape leaders who want to effectively change their landscape? In this online MOOC, organisations share about landscape finance.
As part of the Landscapes for People Food and Nature Initiative, the Landscape Academy was kick-started by the Ministry of Economic Affairs to lead Dutch efforts to strengthen landscape learning. Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation has teamed up with the United Nations Environment Programme and the Global Landscapes Forum to add value and reach to the Academy's work.
Landscape approaches beyond traditional thinking
Landscapes, as multi-functional spaces in which multiple sectors and stakeholders compete for resources and primacy, are suitable spheres to observe and implement these policy objectives and the SDGs themselves. Landscape approaches, therefore, call for cross-sector and multi-stakeholder interventions and governance arrangements which recognise the interdependencies and trade-offs, which are ever-present in landscapes. However, such complex thinking and interventions can cause a serious barrier. It forces to move beyond traditional donor funding with innovative business cases and models that carry benefits outside of one landscape function or sector. In addition, public and private investors need to find ways to reduce or reassess risk and learn to change their definition of what a bankable project can look like.
Balancing environmental and societal policy objectives
Multiple Dutch Ministries and Agencies, similar to many countries around the world, are increasingly focusing on integrating landscape approaches in order to balance environmental and societal policy objectives on topics including food, livelihood security, migration, conflict, biodiversity and climate change. To support learning from these types of challenges, global partners are collaborating to develop a home for learning and developing landscape approaches and thinking. Under the banner of the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF), the Landscape Academy will provide online and face-to-face courses as well as a curated learning library. To enable more efficient learning and knowledge sharing, the Landscape Academy will also bring global capacity development opportunities into one place.
Upcoming course: MOOC on landscape finance
Hosted as a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), learners will be taken through introductory content in a highly interactive manner. The course relies on videos, presentations, quizzes, games and assignments to guide learners, with as little as possible learning completed by reading texts. Learners are also pushed to interact with each other, to strengthen the learning experience.
One of the first courses by the Academy will be on Landscape Finance. The course will closely follow the Landscapes Investment & Finance Toolkit (LIFT) developed by IUCN Netherlands and EcoAgriculture Partners. The content will be supplemented with expertise from diverse sources.
The audience for the upcoming course is wide; from community leaders who want to stimulate investment, to bankers and investors who want to understand landscapes. The course focuses on generating a shared language and understanding of two very different and often distant groups. By developing this shared understanding of the key issues and opportunities, the Landscape Academy wants to build bridges and enable more effective integrated landscape investments.
This upcoming course is just one of multiple courses and activities envisioned under the Landscape Academy and the wider Global Landscapes Forum. Please visit the website for news and updates on the course and more.