Are you a partner of the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE)?
In light of World Environment Day, why not sign up for two training courses on offer by WLE, the Natural Capital Project (NatCap) and Bioversity International, to learn about using an ecosystem services approach in agriculture and natural resource management?
The first training is a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) developed by NatCap to introduce their approach to assessing ecosystem services. Mapping and modelling ecosystem services can help uncover hidden costs and benefits of different natural resource management decisions, providing key information to improve the relationship between people and the ecosystems we depend on.
The second training course is a hands-on training course to be held at CATIE, Costa Rica in September 2014. This training course will focus on applying the theory you have learnt from the MOOC. Different tools and interactive exercises, such as the NatCap-developed board game ‘Tradeoff!’, will be used to model and assess ecosystem services in featured landscapes, such as the Volta Basin in West Africa, where WLE works. The training will also include a field trip to the Volcánica Central-Talamanca Biological Corridor and rafting on the Pacuare River prior to the 7th Annual Ecosystem Service Partnership Conference in San Jose, Costa Rica.
While the rafting serves as a pause between the workshop and the conference, we will also use it to highlight integrated landscape approaches being used by the biological corridor’s committee to manage tradeoffs and synergies between conservation, agriculture, and energy in Costa Rica – a global leader in ecosystem-based approaches.
MOOC – Introduction to the Natural Capital Approach
Start date: June 11th, 2014
Duration: One month, approx. one hour per module per week (videos and reading)
No. of participants: Open to all CGIAR staff and WLE partners
Course description: The course is split into four modules and will include case studies from Belize and Colombia where the approach has been used. It will also include a discussion forum for questions, concern and knowledge sharing. The four modules are:
1) Introduction the Natural Capital approach
2) Tools to produce information on ecosystem services useful for decision-making
3) Getting started with InVEST – a suite of software models to map and valuate ecosystem services
4) I have results! Now what? – interpreting, communicating and applying results from the analysis
Hands-on training course – Introduction to the Natural Capital Approach
Start date: September 3th, 2014
Duration: Two and a half days, plus one day field trip
No. of participants: 20
Prerequisites: Completion of MOOC – Introduction to the Natural Capital Approach
Course description: The course will consist of two and a half days to model and assess ecosystem services using different tools developed by the Natural Capital Project. Side activities include a field trip to the Volcánica Central-Talamanca Biological Corridor and a rafting trip on the Pacuare River.
Cost: WLE partner centres should cover travel costs. WLE will cover all in-country costs and logistics for the course. Limited travel funds are available for partners in need of financial assistance.
To register for either course, please contact Natalia Estrada-Carmona n.e.carmona[at]cgiar.org
Image: Waterfall in Pacuare River, Costa Rica. Credit: kele dobrinski