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Final evaluation of the project “Conservation of biodiversity and mitigation of land degradation through adaptive management of agricultural heritage systems

Project code: GCP/MOR/044/GFF GEF ID: 5481












Management response


FAO. 2020. Final evaluation of the project “Conservation of biodiversity and mitigation of land degradation through adaptive management of agricultural heritage systems”. Project Evaluation Series, 07/2020. Rome.




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    Promoting Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) in Developing Countries and Japan - GCP/GLO/816 /JPN 2022
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    In 2002, FAO launched the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) Initiative. The initiative aims to safeguard the world’s threatened agricultural heritage by promoting the identification, conservation and international recognition of remarkable agricultural heritage sites and their associated landscapes, agricultural biodiversity, knowledge systems and cultures. As of 2017, when the project was scheduled to start, of the 38 sites that had been designated as GIAHS , 26 were located in Asia and the Pacific, while there were only three in Africa and three in Latin America and Caribbean regions. The objective of the project was to promote GIAHS in the world by facilitating the increased number of GIAHS applications from various countries, especially in areas that were geographically under represented , as mentioned above. This would be achieved by inviting relevant government officials and other stakeholders to Japan, to take part in training sessions and be provided with learning opportunities on GIAHS activities in this country. However, it was necessary to reschedule some of the training programme , as at a certain point it was no longer feasible to invite trainees from abroad, due to the outbreak of COVID 19; therefore, embassy staff of the target countries based in Japan were invited instead.
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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Strengthening the implementation of the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems initiative through capacity development 2019
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    The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ (FAO) Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) initiative aims to safeguard the world’s threatened agricultural heritage by promoting, at the global level, the identification, conservation and international recognition of remarkable agricultural heritage sites and their associated landscapes, agricultural biodiversity, knowledge systems and cultures. The FAO–China South-South Cooperation (SSC) project Strengthening the Implementation of the GIAHS Initiative through Capacity Development has promoted exchanges of experiences and technical knowledge among over 100 participating countries. The project has implemented a systematic and substantial capacity development programme through global conferences, training courses and seminars. These have focused on sustainable development, the GIAHS Programme’s conceptual framework and implementation, the registration and dynamic conservation of GIAHS sites, and the exchange of countries’ experiences. These activities aim to strengthen human and organizational capacity at the global, regional and country levels, especially (but not exclusively) in developing countries, to identify and safeguard heritage sites, and to design and implement dynamic conservation plans for their protection and development.
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    Project
    Siwa Oasis, Egypt. Proposal for Declaration as a Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System (GIAHS)
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2016
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    This document proposes to recognize and designate Siwa oasis in the northwestern Desert of Egypt as a Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Site (GIAHS) under the respective FAO program. Siwa is a globally significant in situ repository of plant genetic resources, especially of uniquely adapted varieties of date palm, olive and secondary crops that are highly esteemed for their quality and continue to play a significant role in rural livelihoods, both for nutrition and income. Situated in a r emote region of the Sahara, and surrounded by breathtaking desert landscapes, Siwa oasis is distinguished by a range of archaeological treasures that testify to the long history of the oasis at the crossroads of ancient trade routes, going back to Pharaonic and Ptolemaic epochs. Its long isolation from outside influences, a population tracing its origin to Berber civilization and speaking an indigenous language, and environmental constraints have given Siwa a unique local culture embodied by its mud-salt brick architecture, peculiar social institutions and a rich heritage of handicrafts. Challenges to oasis agriculture, biodiversity and cultural identity are currently effectively addressed by a number of national and local initiatives, including sustainable agricultural practices, improved irrigation management, the protection of wildlife in and around the oasis as well as sustainable tourism.

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