International Satoyama Intiative

IPSI, the International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative, promotes collaboration in the conservation and restoration of sustainable human-influenced natural environments (Socio-Ecological Production Landscapes and Seascapes: SEPLS) through broader global recognition of their value.


The International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative (IPSI), launched during the Tenth Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP10) in Nagoya, Japan, October 2010, is a global platform which aims to facilitate and accelerate the implementation of activities under the Satoyama Initiative. The Partnership consists of diverse organizations committed to promoting and supporting socio-ecological production landscapes and seascapes (SEPLS) for the benefit of biodiversity and human well-being. Since its establishment, IPSI has provided a comprehensive platform for sharing knowledge and making synergies among its membership and with other organizations and networks.


1. IPSI Activities

1.1 Five Clusters of Activities

1.2 Collaborative Activities

1.3 IPSI Global Conference: Assembly and Public Forum

1.4 Case Studies

2. IPSI Structure

2.1 Membership

2.2 Steering Committee

2.3 Secretariat

3. IPSI Strategy and Plan of Action

3.1 IPSI Strategy

3.2 Plan of Action

4. How to become an IPSI member

1. IPSI Activities

1.1 Five Clusters of activities

IPSI members are conducting a wide range of activities to conserve and advance SEPLS. The activities identified by the Paris Declaration on the Satoyama Initiative can be grouped into the following five clusters under two activity goals (a) and (b):

(a) Enhance understanding and raise awareness of the importance of SEPLS:

Cluster 1. Knowledge Facilitation:

Collecting, analysing, synthesising and comparing case studies, and distilling lessons learned for dissemination through a searchable online database and other means, and for use in capacity-building activities.

Cluster 2. Policy Research:

Undertaking research on ways and means to (i) promote wisdom, knowledge and practice which enables a stable supply of diverse ecosystem services; (ii) build bridges for inter-cultural communication between traditional ecological knowledge systems and modern science; (iii) Exploring new forms of co-management system or “new” commons while respecting traditional communal land tenure; (iv) revitalise and innovate SEPLS; and (v) integrate results in policy and decision-making processes.

Cluster 3. Indicators Research:

Developing measurable indicators of resilience associated with linkages between human well-being and the SEPLS mosaic, including linkages between wild and anthropogenic components of landscapes and ecosystems; and applying these indicators to contribute to the implementation of the Ecosystem Approach; and

(b) Support and expand, where appropriate and as part of the implementation of the post-2010 Strategic Plan, SEPLS, building on activities in (a) above:

Cluster 4. Capacity Building:

Enhancing capacities for maintaining, rebuilding and revitalising SEPLS, including promoting education and regional capacity-building workshops.

Cluster 5. On-the-ground Activities:

Providing support for on-the-ground projects and activities to maintain, rebuild and revitalise SEPLS.

1.2 Collaborative Activities

One important mechanism for strengthening collaboration and synergies among member organizations has been the formation and endorsement of IPSI Collaborative Activities. Such activities involve the active participation of two or more member organizations and are subject to endorsement by the IPSI Steering Committee. While this is a voluntary mechanism without binding limits on mandates, many member organizations have made use of it to enter into synergistic cooperation with other organizations towards common goals. To date, 34 collaborative activities covering a wide range of different objectives and scales have been endorsed by the Steering Committee.

Please see here for more information on Collaborative Activities.

1.3 IPSI Global Conference: Assembly and Public Forum

Global Conferences are held regularly with two main functions: the Assembly and the Public Forum.

The Assembly is attended by representatives of member organizations in order to review overall activities and make decisions on institutional matters. The Assembly receives reports of the Steering Committee, and will make decisions if desired and deemed necessary by the Steering Committee.

While the Assembly is only open to representatives of IPSI member organizations, the Public Forum has been conceived as a participatory and inclusive mechanism. The Public Forum serves two main purposes: (1) to strengthen collaboration and synergies among members as well as between the Satoyama Initiative and other relevant initiatives and programmes; (2) to enhance understanding and raise awareness of the importance of SEPLS.

Please see here for more information on the IPSI Global Conferences.

1.4 Case Studies

Collection and sharing among IPSI members as well as a wider audience of case studies, examples of successful implementation of SEPLS, knowledge and other relevant information, helps to enhance understanding and raise awareness of their importance. Such sharing also ensures that the Satoyama Initiative benefits from the strengths and experiences of the various participating organizations.

Please see here for more information on Case Studies.

2. IPSI Structure

2.1 Membership

As an international platform open to organizations dealing with SEPLS, IPSI has sought to foster synergies in the implementation of their respective activities, as well as other activities planned under the Initiative. Since its inception, an inclusive spirit has been fostered in recognition of the multi-sectoral and international dimensions of sustainable use of biodiversity and natural resources.

Types of IPSI member organizations include national and local governmental organizations, other government-affiliated organizations, non-governmental or civil society organizations, indigenous and local community organizations, academic, educational and/or research institutes, industry and private sector organizations, and United Nations or other international organizations.

Application for membership is submitted to the IPSI Secretariat, describing expertise and activities involving SEPLS. A new member organization is asked to contribute at least one case study report on one or more SEPLS. Acceptance of membership to IPSI is determined by the Steering Committee.

As of November 2017, IPSI has grown to include 220 diverse member organizations with activities in countries around the world and spanning a broad range of different sectors.

Please see here for the list of IPSI members.

2.2 Steering Committee

The Steering Committee serves as the executive body acting on behalf of IPSI, and is responsible for governance and management functions. The Steering Committee reviews and provides guidance on the implementation of IPSI activities, makes decisions on its own initiative and in response to requests from the Assembly, reviews and approves membership applications, provides recommendations for consideration by the Assembly, gives guidance to the IPSI Secretariat, and helps to catalyse partnership building and resource mobilization for IPSI. The Steering Committee members are selected from among IPSI members who express interest in participating in the Steering Committee.

2.3 Secretariat

The IPSI secretariat supports IPSI and its members in achieving its missions and objectives and is responsible for undertaking the preparation of the IPSI Global Conference and other IPSI related meetings, facilitating communication within IPSI and with other stakeholders, promoting Collaborative Activities, carrying out awareness-raising and public outreach activities, and assisting in partnership-building.

3. IPSI Strategy and Plan of Action

3.1 IPSI Strategy

The IPSI Strategy was endorsed in October 2012 to enhance the complementarity and synergy created by IPSI among the activities of IPSI members other partners. It consists of IPSI’s Vision, Mission, four Strategic Objectives, and Monitoring and Reporting, as well as an Annex containing guidance on ways and means to achieve the objectives.


The vision of IPSI is to realize societies in harmony with nature. In such societies, human communities develop and maintain socio-economic activities aligned with natural processes, bearing in mind, among other things, the impacts of climate change and desertification. By managing and using biological resources sustainably and thus maintaining and nurturing biodiversity and ecosystem resilience, humans will enjoy a stable supply of various ecosystem services well into the future.


The strategic mission of IPSI is to:

(a) Work together within the partnership and with other networks and/or organizations dealing with SEPLS for the promotion and support of the concept and practices of SEPLS. Implementation of this mission will require the widest possible participation of actors that manage and support SEPLS, and will thus build on the knowledge and experiences of communities and cultures that manage complex mosaic landscapes and aquatic systems for a range of livelihoods and ecosystem services.

(b) Maintain or enhance the contribution of SEPLS to the objectives of the Rio Conventions and related agreements, to the achievement of sustainable development goals such as the Millennium Development Goals and, in general, to livelihoods and human well-being. This strategic mission is particularly relevant during the ongoing United Nations Decade for Deserts and the Fight against Desertification 2010-2020 and the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity 2011-2020.

(c) Promote concrete benefits to the environment, livelihoods, and community well-being on the ground.

Strategic Objectives

IPSI will support its members and other partners to achieve the following objectives.

Objective 1: Increase knowledge and understanding of SEPLS that are addressed by the Satoyama Initiative and make information widely accessible that is of relevance to decision-making on their values, history, status and trends including the factors influencing them positively or negatively as well as the traditional and modern knowledge that sustained and  continues to sustain them, consistent with existing national legislation and international obligations, in particular Article 8 (j) and related provisions of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Objective 2: Address the direct and underlying causes responsible for the decline or loss of biological and cultural diversity as well as ecological and socio-economic services from SEPLS, so as to maintain those that are functioning well and/or rebuild, revitalize or restore lost and/or degraded SEPLS.

Objective 3: Enhance benefits from SEPLS including by supporting factors and actions that increase the sustainable delivery of ecosystem services for human well-being.

Objective 4: Enhance the human, institutional, and sustainable financial capacities for the implementation of the Satoyama Initiative. In the same context, issues relating to SEPLS and their values are mainstreamed, and appropriate policies effectively implemented.

Please see here for the IPSI Strategy document.

3.2 Plan of Action

While the IPSI Strategy formalized the Vision, Mission, and Strategic Objectives of the partnership, there was a call from the members for a Plan of Action to be developed to provide a supportive framework for implementation. Following the Third Global Conference of the International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative (IPSI-3) in 2012, the Steering Committee began initial discussions and steps towards drafting such a Plan of Action for eventual review and endorsement by the membership. The Plan of Action is envisioned for a five-year timeframe as an action-oriented document subject to regular adjustment and revision, as appropriate. To monitor the effectiveness of the Plan of Action, an interim review will be conducted three years into this timeframe.

The objectives contained within the IPSI Strategy and the priority areas identified in this Plan of Action will strengthen IPSI’s contribution not only to conserving and rebuilding SEPLS but also to achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets as well as other relevant targets under the Millennium Development Goals.

Please see here for more on the Plan of Action.

4. How to become an IPSI member

Applications for IPSI membership are reviewed and approved by the Steering Committee. The following documents are required at the time of application:

  • Application form filled out in English and duly signed by the head of the organisation
  • A document that describes the foundation of the organisation, such as the organization’s charter or by-laws

Members of IPSI are also expected to submit at least one case study report in English, French, or Spanish, on their areas of expertise or activities in relation to one or more SEPLS, within six months of the successful approval of their application for IPSI membership.

See our How to Apply page for more detailed information on application. Please contact the IPSI Secretariat should you wish to have more information regarding application and to receive application forms.