Management of Forested Landscapes

Management of Forested Landscapes

The Management of Forested Landscapes applied research group works towards re-greening landscapes by developing climate smart ecosystem management approaches and delivery systems in delta areas. We develop green solutions for the maintenance of ecosystem services while creating sustainable business models and short value chains that are nature inclusive and climate adaptive. We work with entrepreneurs, governments, knowledge institutes and civil society organisations to generate shared value that maximises impact while reducing social, economic and ecological risks. The group collaborates with the study programmes of Forest and Nature Management, Animal Management (wildlife specialisation), Agribusiness and Business Administration, International Agribusiness, Land & Water Management, and International Development Management, applying the triangular approach of practice, education and research.

Key Focus

Forested landscapes

Forested landscapes are much more than just trees or shrubs on a piece of land. They can range from farming landscapes, such as agroforestry systems, to native forests. Human beings have inhabited, shaped, designed and benefited from these landscapes throughout history. Acknowledging this intrinsic relationship requires an approach and mindset that reconciles nature, economic profit and societal values.

Forested landscapes are in fact directly essential to the livelihoods of 1.3 billion people around the world. Re-greening landscapes is therefore about enhancing natural capital, but also about developing nature-inclusive business models, generating innovative ‘green’ short value chains that can strengthen local markets, and creating new entrepreneurship approaches designed to contribute to the creation of a circular economy.

Ensuring this type of sustainable and climate-smart development requires an integrated approach in which tree, land, water and animal management work together in a comprehensive way to yield demand-driven social and technological innovations.

The nexus of forested landscapes and food security

Conventional agriculture feeds a growing population at the expense of the world’s natural capital. By 2050 we expect to have to feed nearly 10 billion people, and we are facing an inexorable clash: either we continue with current food production practices and degrade and deplete the very source of our livelihoods, or we shift towards more resilient and adaptable food production systems that can deliver shared value.

Forests and tree-based systems are indisputably a key resource for food production and nutrition. Agroforestry systems, for example, are nature-inclusive farming systems that can provide more diverse and nutritionally balanced diets, enhance ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration and wildlife habitat preservation, and provide new pathways for innovative business models that offer a wider range of high-value marketable products. This shift towards nature-inclusive food production systems – in a world where intensification remains the standard – requires the development of multi-functional and integrated landscape approaches that allow rural communities and entrepreneurs to reimagine and redesign forested landscapes that can sustain economic profit as well as natural and social capital.

We carry out action-oriented research on innovative designs for agri-production systems in order to develop green solutions for climate-adaptive agriculture. This encompasses agroforestry, circularity in resource use (e.g. soil and water conservation), profitable business models, and equitable management of natural resources. We want to help farmers today and in the future to make a transition towards climate-adaptive agriculture.

About the professor

Eurídice Leyequién has worked as a researcher and advisor in the field of global change in forested landscapes and agroecological systems for more than 15 years, focusing on human-driven ecosystems such as agroforestry. She was appointed Professor of Management of Forested Landscapes in 2016. Over the past four years she and her team have developed projects in the Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, Romania, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Brazil, funded by the European Union (see www.farm-life.eu), the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (see https://vimeo.com/371928517), and NUFFIC.

Eurídice Leyequién
Eurídice Leyequién

Applied research group

Eurídice Leyequién Abarca, PhD
Professorship Management of
Forested Landscapes
Albertien Kijne, MSc
Tropical Crop Science, Horticulture
Marcel Rompelman, PhD
Land and Water Management
Johan Meinderts, MSc
Tropical Agriculture, Animal Husbandry
Daan van der Linde, MSc
Leadership in Sustainability
Pleun van Arensbergen, PhD
Gender equity
Ronald Boertje, MSc
Geoinformatics
Freek Rurup, MSc
Landscape architecture
Hans van den Dool, MSc
Soil management
Suzanne van der Meulen, MSc
Sustainable regional food systems
Peter van der Meer, PhD
Associate professorship Oil Palm and Tropical Forest 
Gina Reindsen
Finance and Control

 

Kenniskring Management of Forested Landscapes
Kenniskring Management of Forested Landscapes

Want to know more?

If you would like to know more about the applied research group, e-mail your question to Euridice.leyequienabarca@hvhl.nl or call +31 (0)58 284 63 31 (Nelleke Fledderus, secretariat).