We are looking for already-implemented solutions that engage people and organizations across sectors to preserve biodiversity. By building alliances and catalyzing collaboration between key players — such as citizens, the scientific community, companies and/or governments —we can scale innovations to address the enormous environmental challenge we face.
in 15 days
VITTEL® and Ashoka are launching the "Act for Biodiversity" Challenge - a global search for changemakers who can bring key players together to preserve and restore biodiversity.
Because biodiversity is a broad topic, we are narrowing our scope according to the 3 criteria below. We are seeking implemented innovations that:
1. Use a systemic approach. If a project focuses on preserving a single species, it must address why preserving that species contributes to the overall health of its respective ecosystem and other species.
2. Value collaborating with other key players. Preserving biodiversity requires solutions that integrate expertise and participation from stakeholders like farmers, scientists, policymakers, and the public. We are looking for innovators who have either built collaboration into their solution already or want to bring other players on board in the future.
3. Align with one of the following FOCUS AREAS:
A) Address the impacts of urbanization. Urban areas are now home to the majority of our planet’s population. We often overlook the variety of life found in cities — urban green spaces host native and non-native species critical to the earth’s health and human wellbeing. We're seeking solutions that strengthen biodiversity in the urban environment, such as strategies to implement green infrastructure or engage city residents in creative conservation efforts.
B) Innovate agricultural systems. Agriculture is the largest contributor to the loss of biodiversity. Common agricultural practices — such as unsustainable monocultures, pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and inefficient irrigation — hurt the vital ecosystem services, such as pollination, biological pest control, healthy soils and watersheds, that are essential to sustaining life. We're seeking solutions that are changing this narrative.
C) Nurture and preserve forests. As the most diverse ecosystems on land, forests are not only home to trees and plants, but most of the world’s terrestrial species. Every year, we lose over 18 million hectares of forest, which is threatened by deforestation, degradation, hunting, and invasive species. We’re seeking solutions that protect and nurture the rich biodiversity found in forests.
We're interested in all kinds of solutions to preserve biodiversity - from scientific innovations to community initiatives - as long as they fulfill the eligibility criteria and fit within the Challenge scope.
For reference, check out these real-world examples:
A scientific solution that boosts biodiversity by sustainably managing and monitoring bee populations, using this data to inform stakeholders like farmers, companies, and governments and to help local ecosystems thrive.
An organization that connects young people in rapidly urbanizing areas with nature, educating students and communities and training them to care for urban nature reserves.
A citizen association of professional women foresters who combine vegetable gardens and wild tree nurseries to protect biodiversity, reduce desertification, and ensure better health and nutrition for their communities.
Illustration Photo: Agroforestry research plots at HARC (credits: Kyle Spradley | © 2014 - Curators of the University of Missouri / Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0))