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The 2016 Global Landscape Forum : An Ocean for Learning and Networking

The Global Landscape Forum (GLF) 2016, an interactive platform to discuss the role of agriculture, forestry and other land uses in climate change and development, was organized on 16th November, 2016 as a side event of COP22 at Kenzi Club Agdal Medina, Marakesh, Morocco. It was my privilege to be a part of the forum as a social media reporter and a youth participant representing YPARD Nepal

16th November was a big day which brought together around 450 on-site participants and thousands of people online around the globe in a forum to discuss on the changing climate and landscape issues. Twelve discussion forums on different topics, some launch pads and exhibitions from different organizations were full of variety of information and resources to gain from. I participated in a couple of discussion forums that were of interest to me where I was able to enrich my learning on ensuring food security in changing climate through effective land use practices. 

During the panel discussion on Informing the Policy Making Landscape: From Research to Action in the Fight against Climate Change and Hunger, the speakers highlighted the importance of mitigation in agriculture to fight climate change. They emphasized that not mitigating climate change  in agriculture will increase the cost of mitigation in other sectors or reduce the feasibility of meeting the 2 degree goal. Necessity of investments in peatland ecosystems for climate mitigation was also discussed during a panel discussion. 

Presenting on ‘Trees on Farms’, Henry Neufeldt from ICRAF stated that trees on agricultural land make an important contribution to climate change mitigation and over the past decade they have sequestered 0.7 Gt CO2 per year across the globe. 

The session of youths, “Youth in Landscapes” was an outstanding one and brought together enthusiastic and motivated youths from different countries to discuss on a common agenda. The session titled ‘Disconnection to interconnection: The role of youth in shifting perceptions and presenting solutions to rural-urban migration’ was solely driven by youth facilitators. During the session, different groups were formed to discuss on the experiences, challenges and opportunities on migration of youth. The discussion was followed by presentations which brought up several ideas, perspectives and examples from different parts of the world.

A day prior to the GLF, on 15th November, I also participated in a-day long Social Media Bootcamp facilitated by Master of Social Media, Peter Casier. It was an amazing experience to be a part of his training which started with an introduction and sharing the views of making communication the priority by participants. The bootcamp paved its way forward to meaningful and participative discussions on how different tools have been used by different organizations. One of the key and interesting topic of discussion was on importance, opportunities and challenges of taking onsite events into online era. Other topics covered were tracking or measuring social media engagement and performance and tips and tricks to increase engagement on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedln, Instagram, etc. I also had an opportunity to moderate a sharing session on tools which really changed things for me during which every participant shared their experiences.  

The bootcamp was successful in boosting the online media knowledge of communication officers and young professionals from different organizations and build up and prepare onsite reporters for GLF. It was an excellent platform for me to build good insights on different old and new social media tools along with networking with other professionals. 

During the 2016 Global Landscapes Forum , I was overwhelmed to see the leading and active participation of youths from around the globe striding to work on Landscape issues and was glad to have the opportunity to be the part of this forum. At the same time, the forum turned out to be a place to network with several scientists, professors, professionals and youths from different corners of world. I express my sincere gratitude to YPARD that provided me with the necessary support to be the part of GLF 2016. I am grateful to Dinesh Panday, YPARD Nepal country representative for entrusting me with this role and providing proactive support throughout the program.

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