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Acción mundial de la FAO sobre servicios de polinización para una agricultura sostenible

Linking farmland Biodiversity to Ecosystem seRvices for effective ecological intensification (LIBERATION) (2013-2016)

LIBERATION is a research project at the cutting-edge of agronomy and ecology. The project aims to provide the evidence base for ecological intensification, demonstrating the effect of substituting external input by enhancing the ecosystem services on and around the farmland in seven representative agricultural landscape types in Europe. Within the LIBERATION project, FAO is in charge of providing the outreach and communication, linking the project’s scientific results with researchers, policy-makers and the general public. The project will be positioned to share methods, build capacity and provide the evidence base for managing farmland biodiversity to enhance ecosystem services to agriculture.

FAO coordinates the compilation of knowledge related to ecological intensification and its policy implications. In a first step the communication and outreach strategy was built, underlining the importance of defining the concrete way forward in collaboration with all project partners. In order to provide an overview of existing work and key terms on ecological intensification, FAO, working with the Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research (PAR), then provided a bibliography and a glossary on the topic.

In collaboration with external consultants, FAO supports work to identify policy linkages, and measures to scale up, find synergies, and combine agroecological approaches to food production. In particular, FAO has produced three case studies on policy entry points for ecological intensification for sub-national governments in Sweden (Malmö), the Netherlands (Hoeksche Waard) and Italy (Milano region), demonstrating the increased relevance of the topic and concrete entry points for policies.

In collaboration with the project partners and Xerces Society, FAO currently coordinates the development of very hands-on guidance on effective on-site demonstration of ecosystem services (such as soil fertility, natural pest management and pollination). This will culminate in a number of publications.

Published results from LIBERATION research are disseminated by FAO, working in collaboration with external partners such as Food Tank not only to sub-national, national and regional governments, but also to the general public – facilitating discussions and interpretation of the results for the different stakeholder groups. An online discussion on the FAO FSN forum was also set up over four weeks (November-December 2015), in order to encourage discussion around the topic of ecological intensification and give exposure to project findings on a platform involving over 7,000 members. A summary of key highlights from the discussion is available here.

The LIBERATION project aims to provide the evidence base for eco-functional intensification and demonstrate the concept in seven representative agricultural landscape types in Europe. Within the LIBERATION project, there are eight Work Packages (WP).

Work Package 7, which FAO is involved in, will serve as the vehicle to communicate project findings, establish an information-sharing network with key stakeholders and disseminate relevant information on the role and management of farmland biodiversity in securing ecosystem services for eco-functional intensification. In the communication, information dissemination and training aspect of this proposal, it is possible to activate networks and information channels on a global level, to share information amongst practitioners and policy makers who are working on “eco-functional intensification” around the world. The project will be positioned to share methods, build capacity and provide the evidence base for managing farmland biodiversity to enhance ecosystem services to agriculture.

FAO’s contribution is on leading on WP7, “Communication, Dissemination and Training of Effective Ecofunctional Intensification”. It coordinates the compilation of the knowledge base on this topic, profiles of best practice, and curricular material. FAO supports work to identify policy linkages, and measures to scale up, find synergies, and combine agroecological approaches to food production, in particular by presenting and discussing research findings with policy makers on different levels, including local governments and identifying enabling mechanisms for a transition to more effective management of ecosystem services in farmland. FAO also coordinates the development of guidance on effective on-site demonstration to farmers and stakeholders (as implemented by other counterparts in WP 3) of the role of ecosystem services in crop production, and the range of measures to manage it. 

In particular, FAO is involved in the following “Tasks”:

  • Initiate international stakeholders’ dialogue by means of a website and information dissemination platform, along with a network providing guidance in developing the evidence base for ecological intensification.
  • Form linkages between farmers practicing ecological intensification and local governments
  • Build capacity amongst early career professionals and policy makers to address and support ecological intensification
  • Demonstrate management options promoting ecological intensification