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What to Expect

Gain a better understanding of the current dynamics related to investments in mountain regions and a fuller overview of existing laws and policies globally

Explore financial mechanisms that foster the development of mountain areas and compensation mechanisms for environmental services provided

Present win-win partnerships between conservation agencies, business companies and local communities, or other kinds of innovative alliances

Full Objectives of Thematic Track 4

Ecosystem services such as clean air, freshwater or hydropower are often interpreted as public goods without monetary value. However, the costs for preserving these vital services can fall on mountain communities in the form of direct economic losses and opportunity costs, and so mountain communities should be compensated for providing such services through development of appropriate financial mechanisms. In this session track we seek to explore opportunities and experiences from around the world on how communities can benefit from investments in mountain areas. It will be equally important to understand how investments in mountain areas consider sustainability aspects and how related interventions are impacting environmental and social dynamics.
We furthermore wish to inquire if and how investing in youth can be driving mountain development towards a thriving sustainable future.

T - 1.4    Current trends and dynamics

In this session, we seek contributions that help gain a better understanding of the current dynamics related to investments in mountains regions, who the main investors are and how local people’s interests are considered in such investments. It is equally important to explore innovative ways to profile and market mountain goods and products. We also aim to collect and share knowledge on how countries allocate their budgets to mountain areas in terms of infrastructure development, enabling environment in doing business. We particularly invite contributors that share information on countries that have recently adopted mountain-specific policies and laws related to investment and/or payment for mountain ecosystem services.

T - 2.4    Pathways towards a sustainable mountain future

We  want to explore different financial mechanisms that foster development of mountain populations and compensate them for the services provided with their lands and environment (compensation and benefit-sharing mechanisms). We are particularly seeking for good practices related to investments in community-based tourism / eco-tourism, water services and ICT (new technologies that can offer new accessibility and communication solutions). Furthermore, we would welcome examples of green economy strategies that allow mountain communities to benefit from emerging opportunities and to protect mountain resources from the increasing demand. The principles of subsidiarity and decentralisation would be keys in this reflexion.

 T - 3.4    Enabling partnerships

We seek inputs and contributions that present win-win partnerships between conservation agencies, business companies and local communities, or other kind of innovative alliances e.g. public-private-partnerships. We would like to learn more about transboundary cooperation experiences, and understand what are the challenges and solutions for such partnerships. Furthermore, we seek example of investments that takes into account upstream and downstream interests.

Guiding Questions

What are the types of current investors that foster mountain communities’ participation and take into account their needs and specificities such as, for example, cultural change without loss of identity or protecting mountain resources?

Which are the key conditions and mechanisms leading to institutional arrangements that allow mountain communities to benefit from their own resources and other merging opportunities?

What are the strategies to eradicate the political marginalization found in many mountain regions?

What challenges might be faced when introducing the concept of environmental compensation (financial and legal) and what are best practices for implementing a successful environmental compensation program?

How can investments in eco-tourism and/or in ICT be development leverage for mountain communities? Can eco-tourism and ICT be a way of addressing the development backlog and preventing migration for high to low lands?

How can large-scale private investors find more interest in integrating a sustainable development approach in the regions where they invest? What could be the arguments in favour of SMD for private investors?

How can mountain communities be empowered to develop win-win and benefit-sharing initiatives? What mechanisms enable them to use their own eco-systemic resources sustainably and respectfully?

What are the transboundary cooperation experiences that values upstream and downstream interests? What are the challenges and the solutions for successful transboundary partnerships?

Contribution and Submission Process

Short abstracts (350-400 words) are invited to address one of the four core themes for the review by the scientific steering committee. Selected authors  will be asked to present their contributions at the WMF 2018 in a poster format followed by a 7 minute ‘flash-talk’. Inputs are sought to discuss potential collaborative mechanisms, innovative partnerships and alliances conducive to reconciling demands and claims. Please refer to content and suggested guiding questions to address and shape your proposed contribution accordingly.

All proposals should be submitted using the forum's official website. Deadline for contribution proposals is Sunday 29 July 2018, 11:59 (GMT +6). 

When and Where

Please refer to the conference programme.

Track coordinators: Marie Du Pontavice and Eric Nanchen (FDDM), Philbert Nsengiyumva and Sam Kanyamibwa (ARCOS)