Satoyama landscape is a traditional Japanese multi-functional land use system in which agricultural practices and natural resource management techniques are used to optimize the benefits derived from local ecosystems. The products obtained (including food and fuel) help safeguard the community against poverty, but without degrading the land, water or other resources.

Similar landscapes have sustained millions of people around the globe for thousands of years. Yet, with the various forces of modernization and urbanization, these ways have been increasingly undermined or abandoned, and many ecosystems have been harmed and the corresponding communities weakened.

The Satoyama Initiative, a global effort led by the Ministry of the Environment of Japan and the United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies, aims to help evaluate such landscapes and promote the revival and amelioration of the mechanisms for their sustainable management.  The Initiative can help achieve the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), being officially proposed at the CBD’s Tenth Conference of the Parties and incorporated into Convention-related activities.

Authors / Target audience

The Initiative’s portal serves as a mechanism for networking, communication and information-sharing among the Satoyama International Partnership, which is to be comprised of participating national governments, local governments, civil societies, local communities, private sector entities, NPOs/NGOs, educational and research institutes and international organizations — all of whom have stakes and interests in advancing such landscapes where human-nature relationships are more sustainable.

The educational materials produced by these partners — such as videos conveying information about the Initiative, case studies and lessons learnt — serve not just in achieving the goals of the Initiative, but as an important reference for academics and students in related fields. Additionally, the video content acts as awareness-raising material for the general public at a time when such knowledge needs to be more widely disseminated and considered.

Design and technology

The portal has been developed using Wordpress. The video content showcased is produced by the Media Studio and hosted in Vimeo. Compatibility has been tested with Explorer, Firefox and Safari.

Copyright License

Except where otherwise specified, the contents (text, video, graphics, photography) of the Satoyama Initiative portal are licensed by the United Nations University under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license.

Project Title

Satoyama Initiative

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