In 2015, Willem Ferwerda, along with our colleague Dieter van Broeck and Commonland Ambassador John D.Liu, each contributed chapters to the Elsevier-published book “Land RestorationReclaiming Landscapes for a Sustainable Future” by Ilan Chabay, Martin Frick, Jennifer Helgeson. Read on to find out more about the book and access links to the individual chapters.

The book: Land Restoration: Reclaiming landscapes for a sustainable future

Chapter 4.6 – Willem Ferwerda (2015): Four Returns, Three Zones, 20 Years: A Systemic Approach to Scale up Landscape Restoration by Businesses and Investors to Create a Restoration Industry.

Chapter 4.8 –  John D Liu and Chris Bradley (2015): A Continuing Inquiry into Ecosystem Restoration: Examples from China’s Loess Plateau and Locations Worldwide and Their Emerging Implications.

Chapter 8.3 – Maura Talbot and Dieter van den Broeck (2015): Shifting from Individual to Collective Action: Living Land’s experience in the Baviaanskloof, South Africa.

About the book:

  • Provides accessible information about the science behind land degradation and restoration for those who do not directly engage with the science allowing full access to the issue at hand.
  • Includes practical on-the-ground examples garnered from diverse areas, such as the Sahel, Southeast Asia, and the U.S.A.
  • Provides practical tools for designing and implementing restoration/re-greening processes.


  • Land is a crucial resource that feeds us, provides us with shelter, and drives instability when lost.
  • With a growing global population and increasing demand for land, competition for this resource will only intensify.
  • The loss of productive land and soil is leading to declining food production, hunger, and forced migration, especially in vulnerable developing countries.
  • Sustainable land and soil management is crucial for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and can help fight climate change by getting carbon back in the soil.
  • Addressing the real-world drivers of instability, such as land degradation, can build resilience to shocks and conflict and provide a foundation for the future.