Nine new members have joined the International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative (IPSI), a global partnership for biodiversity conservation and human well-being whose secretariat is hosted by UNU-IAS. Bringing the total membership to 267, the new applications were accepted at the annual meeting of the IPSI Steering Committee held 18 May to 5 June 2020, which also included discussions on collaborative activities and the strategic direction for the partnership.
The new IPSI members are:
• Advocates for Biodiversity Conservation (ABC-Ghana) (Non-governmental or civil society organisation; Ghana)
• Austrian Academy of Sciences, Institute for Interdisciplinary Mountain Research (Academic, educational, or research organisation; Austria)
• The Council of Promoting Biodiversity in Rice Paddies Connected to Lake Biwa (Other – collaboration between local government and related residents; Japan)
• Nirmanie Development Foundation (NDF) (Indigenous or local community organisation; Sri Lanka)
• People Empowering & Development Alternatives (PEDA) International (Industry or private sector organisation; Pakistan)
• Suganthi Devadason Marine Research Institute (SDMRI) (Non-governmental or civil society organisation; India)
• Taiwan Landscape Environment Association (TLEA) (Non-governmental or civil society organisation, Taiwan, Province of China)
• Vellore Institute of Technology (Academic, educational and/or research institute; India)
• VICAM: Vicuñas, Camélidos y Ambiente (Non-governmental or civil society organisation; Argentina)
The meeting also saw the endorsement of four proposals for new IPSI collaborative activities: i) Mainstreaming of Taiwan Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative (TPSI) in line with Taiwan Ecological Network (TEN), ii) New Futures for Satoyama: Innovation in Policy and Practice to Sustain Cultural Landscapes, iii) International Symposium on Mountain Studies: Satoyama Mountainscapes, and iv) Enhancing Community Capacity for Livelihood Diversification through Mangrove Forest-based Products.
Steering Committee members also engaged in a lively discussion of future plans for the partnership both during and beyond the current COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, including the possibility of holding online webinars on landscape approaches, and plans for events once international conferences become possible once again.