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.

ISAP2012 Parallel Session: The Satoyama Initiative and Resilience – Pathways to a Sustainable Society

IPSI representatives recently gathered to hold a parallel session during the Fourth International Forum for Sustainable Asia and the Pacific (ISAP2012) in Yokohama, Japan. ISAP2012 attracted over 1,100 participants and visitors, and the parallel session “The Satoyama Initiative and Resilience – Pathways to a Sustainable Society” was held under the Forum’s resilience theme. The presentation files of the three panelists are available on the right for download in addition to the event flyer.

Participants and Attendees Gather at ISAP2012 Parallel Session


  • Prof. Alfred Oteng-Yeboah (Moderator) – National Chairman Ghana National Biodiversity Committee
  • Dr. Krishna Chandra Paudel (Panelist) – Secretary, Eastern Regional Administration Office, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of Nepal
  • Ms. Joji Cariño (Panelist) – Advisor and Team Leader, Indigenous Peoples Capacity-Building Project for CBD Implementation, Indigenous Peoples’ International Centre for Policy Research and Education (TEBTEBBA)
  • Mr. Katsuhiko Tada (Panelist) – President, Tada Organic Farm Co., Japan
  • Dr. Ryo Kohsaka (Discussant) – Visiting Research Fellow, United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS) (Operating United Ichikawa-Kanazawa: OUIK) / Associate Professor, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institute of Human and Social Sciences, Kanazawa University
  • Dr. Kalemani Jo Mulongoy (Discussant) – Visiting Professor, United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS)

Summary of Presentations

Opening the parallel session, the moderator Prof. Alfred Oteng-Yeboah provided participants with a brief introduction to the Satoyama Initiative and the term socio-ecological production landscapes and seascapes (SEPLS). He pointed out that the second of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s three objectives has been difficult, namely the sustainable use of biodiversity, but that “Japan has provided an answer: satoyama and satoumi”.

The first panelist, Dr. Krishna Chandra Paudel, explained how experiences in Nepal have demonstrated that community forestry is more effective and has brought about more positive change for people’s livelihoods than past government-led initiatives. He also emphasized the importance of a holistic approach extending beyond simple forestry management. Finally, he talked about the integration of SEPLS into National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs), including the potential and importance of harmonization with existing institutions and effective engagement with CFUGs.

The second panelist, Ms. Joji Cariño, provided an in-depth presentation of indigenous territorial and landscape management. She emphasized that traditional territories of indigenous peoples are some of the world’s oldest SEPLS – mosaic landscapes sustainably managed over long periods using traditional knowledge. Among other things, she indicated the importance of having secure rights so that systems under pressure will not continue to erode. She concluded her presentation by highlighting Strategic Goal E of the Aichi Targets as well as key passages from the Rio+20 outcome document “The Future We Want”.

The final panelist, Mr. Katsuhiko Tada, shared his own personal insights from experiencing the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami on 11 March 2011. As the owner of a farm in the affected Tohoku region, he immediately organized recovery efforts drawing on the community’s strong resilience. He also emphasized how there is a need for realism as recovery efforts move forward, and ideas need to be collected abroad as well as within Japan to foster out-of-the-box thinking.

Discussants Dr. Jo Mulongoy and Dr. Ryo Kohsaka provided expert insight based on the panel presentations and their broad experience with resilience and sustainability issues.

Question and Answer Session

In response to question about how sea resources impact on satoyama/satoumi areas, Mr. Tada spoke of the inundation of agricultural fields as a result of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. Although the salt from the ocean water had negative impacts, the water also deposited high levels of minerals to the soil, which fostered growth of beneficial micro-organisms, leading to more fertile soil.

A question was raised about whether infrastructure development expenses in Nepal had benefited external or local contractors. Dr. Paudel responded by saying that these financial resources directly benefited the local areas, as the communities were responsible for building the roads and schools as well as paying the salaries of the teachers.

Audience Members at ISAP2012 Parallel Session