New Publication: Recognising and Supporting the Role of Culture in Effective Area-based Conservation


A new UNU-IAS Policy Brief offers recommendations on recognising and supporting cultures’ role in effective area-based conservation. Titled Recognising and Supporting the Role of Culture in Effective Area-based Conservation, the brief was authored by William Dunbar, Suneetha M. Subramanian, and Makiko Yanagiya. 


Other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs) can achieve positive biodiversity outcomes in a larger area than is covered by protected areas. But this requires OECMs to be better integrated into sustainable production systems in conjunction with protected areas. Good examples of productive social-ecological systems exist. Recognising potential OECMs requires recognising the cultures that make them possible.


  • Fully recognise and support the role of culture in fostering interlinked human–nature relationships and nurturing biodiversity in production landscapes and seascapes.
  • Develop sustainable market mechanisms using landscape approaches that promote respect for local cultures and the rights of all stakeholders.
  • Apply good practices for empowering cultures to enhance long-term biodiversity outcomes.
  • Provide innovative incentives including capacity development to encourage local communities to manage their landscapes and seascapes for biodiversity conservation.