With support from the Dutch National Postcode Lottery’s Dream Fund (Nationale Postcode Loterij), Commonland and partners will support changemakers to scale up existing landscape restoration projects via a new landscape leadership academy. With the aim of restoring 10 million hectares of land worldwide, the academy will help communities find ways to prosper in harmony with the ecosystems they’ve lived in and depended upon for generations.

The National Dutch Postcode Lottery has announced it will fund a new landscape leadership academy run by Commonland and selected partners. The academy will train regional teams in 100 different landscapes to guide and implement landscape restoration projects.  The project will launch later this year, receiving a total of €12 million over the next 10 years.

Landscapes and farmland around the world are in poor condition – according to the United Nations Global Land Outlook 2022, 40% of the world’s usable land is now badly degraded. This directly affects some 3.2 billion people worldwide and indirectly impacts many more. From climate change and biodiversity loss, to reduced food and water security, landscape degradation is at the heart of the world’s biggest problems.

Fortunately, changemakers worldwide are working to restore landscapes. Landscape restoration is about making landscapes degraded by poor land use or climate change healthy again. With the right tools and approach, a landscape can be restored in one generation – or 20 years.

Transformative leadership and collaboration are essential to achieving the restoration of the world’s degraded landscapes. To make landscapes healthy and resilient, communities, farmers, businesses, citizens and governments must work together on the basis of a joint, long-term vision and action plan.” Willem Ferwerda, CEO of Commonland

For 10 years, Commonland has tirelessly supported local and international partners restoring landscapes worldwide– so that people can once again live, work and find happiness in the landscape where their community has lived for generations.

With a long history of developing and nurturing collaborative partnerships worldwide, Commonland will work with selected partners to train the landscape leaders of the future. Scientific knowledge will be combined with two relatively new methods: the 4 Returns framework, a practical approach to landscape restoration, and the Presencing Institute’s stakeholder management tool: Theory U.

Leaders rooted in landscapes have the right knowledge and experience to guide and accelerate this change. They know their landscape’s challenges better than anyone and already have a multi-stakeholder network. By equipping these leaders with the skills and tools to drive local and regional restoration at scale, Commonland and partners hope to accelerate community-led landscape restoration worldwide.

Watch this space for more news about the academy coming soon!