The Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Network (BES-Net) is a capacity sharing “network of networks” that promotes dialogue between science, policy and practice for more effective management of biodiversity and ecosystems, contributing to long-term human well-being and sustainable development. BES-Net complements and contributes to the capacity building work of the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) by aligning its activities with the IPBES global assessment themes and applying the related IPBES guidance documents.
Communication and capacity-building is promoted by BES-Net through its innovative Trialogues. The Trialogue is a face-to-face multi-stakeholder dialogue that brings together scientists, policymakers and practitioners with indigenous and local knowledge into a welcoming and constructive space to focus on specific policy questions at the national and regional levels. The Trialogue carefully convenes participants who have influence over the status of BES at different levels across the environmental and productive sectors of society. The methodology helps overcome traditional barriers to the exchange of knowledge and capacities, empowering the voice of all three communities of practice, science, and policy. Three-way interactions help the participants to foster mutual learning, improve inter-cultural understanding and jointly develop common agendas for action.
At the regional level, Trialogues aim at strengthening the interface between science/traditional knowledge, policy and practice, and enhancing national capacity to integrate findings and recommendations of the IPBES thematic assessments into policy, planning, and on-the-ground programmes and projects. Regional Trialogues were held with a geographic focus on Eastern Europe in October 2017 and the Caribbean in September 2018 in order to promote the uptake of the key messages of the IPBES’s Thematic Assessment Report on Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production within the participating countries. After the release of the IPBES Thematic Assessment Report on Land Degradation and Restoration in late 2018, two additional Regional Trialogues were held with the expanded focus on the interlinked issues of pollinators/pollination and broader land-based ecosystems for Anglophone Africa in May 2019 and Central Asia in October 2019.
At the national level, the Trialogue approach is used to open up and enrich the dialogue between the three communities of scientists, policymakers and practitioners (e.g. local and indigenous communities, farmers, businesses, civil society, and NGOs, etc.) in support of the ongoing national ecosystem assessments (NEAs) process. Trialogues help strengthen the participation of key stakeholders in the assessment process, bringing in multiple voices including those of indigenous and local communities, whilst ensuring that the findings are policy-relevant and increase policy uptake of the assessment report recommendations across the environment and productive sectors. Thus far, three National Trialogues were held for Cameroon in February 2019, Colombia in June 2019 and Vietnam in November 2019.