Incentives for Ecosystem Services (IES) in the Himalayas: A ‘Cookbook’ for Emerging IES Practitioners in the Region
It may sound clichéd, but envisioning the success of a project is the first step to bringing it to reality. This step is often overlooked, but is crucially important. First, because an ability to describe a project in real, vivid and motivational terms will help draw other interested people and collaborators to it. If people cannot imagine an alternate future, they are very unlikely to participate or to invest real time and effort when needed. Step 1. Envisioning
IES often joins together positive environment/ development solutions in situations where improving the environment may have formerly been seen as in opposition to human development goals. The ability to vividly and specifically describe these win- win solutions can help attract the necessary energy, cooperation and resources to an IES system.
Second, the ability to plan a successful IES system relies on the ability to recognize an opportunity with respect to ecosystem services — a gap between the ‘business as usual’ scenario, and an alternate, more desirable path — especially an ambitious one. Envisioning the desired outcome of an IES system requires describing in specific terms the improvements in ecosystem services, and their benefits and beneficiaries.
Step 1: Envisioning the desired outcome • Define specific improvement in ecosystem services • Define specific improvement in livelihoods • Describe business as usual scenario and the desired change
Incentives for Ecosystem Services (IES) in the Himalayas
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