Details Thematic Workshop, 21/09/12

Thematic Workshop, 21/09/12

The Archipelago of Soqotra (Yemen) is the most important centre for biodiversity within the Horn of Africa hotspot, is one of the WWF's global 200 eco-regions and had been designated as a Man and Biosphere reserve by UNESCO. In 2008 it was listed as a World Heritage Site.
At the same time Yemen is one of the 20 least developed countries in the world. With the actually ongoing political and social crisis, the poverty rate has risen to around 40%, manifested by sharp increases in food prices and a persistently high level of unemployment. Many rural areas and the islands face a particularly bleak outlook, as they lack any social and economic prospects. The wide spread poverty it is one of the most important root causes for increasing anthropogenic pressure on biodiversity in Yemen that is leading to the extinction of many species and symbiotic communities and so the rapid loss of biodiversity.
Biodiversity conservation and protection of natural assets is thus inherently concerned with a multifaceted, highly interdependent social-ecological environment
The Workshop will explore approaches and strategies for development interventions at the interface to biodiversity, climate and conservation science, environmental economy and social ecology using the example of the Soqotra Archipelago, an “island model” area rich in biodiversity assets, conservation challenges, and economic problems alike, drawing on 15 years of continuous experience.
During the morning session experts from Yemen and Germany will present current approaches to development cooperation and introduce into challenges related to biodiversity conservation and the application of the concepts of Ecosystem Services and Social-Ecological Systems in this context. Their presentations will be matched with local experience presented by conservation and development practitioners and overviews on state-of-the-art bioclimatic research and modelling presented by scientists of BiK-F.
The afternoon session will draw on the expertise represented by the participants and invited experts of the workshop and seek to identify first answers to the question: “How can livelihoods and income of the Soqotra-population be improved through a sustainable use of its biodiversity?”.
The Workshop is co-convened by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. Together with its Yemeni partners, the GIZ is currently preparing the program “Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity” in Yemen and on Soqotra.