Advisory Documents

Multi-stakeholder dialogue

The GEF is committed to enhancing integration across sectors, catalysing innovation to alter systems that degrade the global environment and leveraging multi-stakeholder coalitions to influence transformational change across scales. This Guidance Note offers advice on the principles and practices that contribute to effective design and implementation of multi-stakeholder dialogue (MSD) to address GEF priorities. The primary emphasis is on the use of MSD processes to contribute to regional or global coalitions for transformational change that integrate private sector actors, including multinational corporations, industry associations and private financial institutions.

The Note uses the term MSD to refer to sustained dialogue enabling collaborative action among diverse stakeholders at multiple scales, explicitly aiming for transformational change in systems that can generate global environmental benefits. Four models of transformation found in the GEF portfolio are outlined, along with the barriers to scaling that they face. MSD can address these barriers to achieve integration across sectors, international exchange and learning, increased policy commitment, enhanced private sector engagement and financing, and –ultimately – new levels of enduring outcome and impact. The Note offers a number of core principles which have been identified by researchers and seasoned practitioners to inform good practice.



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STAP guidelines for screening GEF projects

The screening guidelines for GEF projects were developed by STAP, and follow the structure of the GEF’s Project Identification Form (PIF).  The guidelines answer the question, “what does STAP look for when it screens projects?”, and provide prompts for project proponents to address scientific and technical issues that are important for designing projects. For example, the guidelines assist with the problem analysis, and help develop an impact pathway (theory of change) to achieve the project objective. To help plan for change in the project’s social-ecological system, the guidelines assist with developing intervention options and alternative pathways to deal with the change required (incremental or transformational change) to achieve resilience.

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A Conceptual Framework for Governing and Managing Key Flows in a Source-to-Sea Continuum

This Advisory Document from the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) takes stock of a range of earlier GEF IW investments and concludes that existing governance and management arrangements could be improved to balance the often diverse and conflicting water management objectives, stakeholder priorities, and institutional arrangements of connected systems in the source-to-sea continuum. This proposed source-to-sea framework considers the interconnected social, ecological, and economic systems in a comprehensive manner, from the land area that is drained by a river system to the coastal area to the open ocean it flows into. It offers a way to consolidate analysis, planning, policy-making, and decision-making across sectors and scales. STAP presents in this paper a conceptual framework that can support the design and implementation of GEF projects addressing inter-connected upstream and downstream water systems by identifying several key flows that must be managed across the source-to-sea continuum and geographies.

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Mainstreaming Biodiversity in Practice

The challenges confronting the conservation of the planet’s richness of life threaten to overwhelm our collective efforts to limit species loss and degradation of ecosystems and the services that they deliver. The foundation of biodiversity conservation for well over a century have been protected areas (PAs). While successful, they are increasingly vulnerable to land use changes taking place around them.  In response to these trends, conservationists and international organizations have developed and actively supported a new biodiversity conservation paradigm: biodiversity mainstreaming. It is the process of embedding biodiversity considerations into policies, strategies and practices of key public and private actors to promote conservation and sustainable use of natural resources beyond PA boundaries.  This STAP Advisory Document on Mainstreaming Biodiversity in Practice reports on the outcome of two workshops on this issue that took place in Cape Town, South Africa in 2004 and 2013.  In 2004, the objective was to review the concept of biodiversity mainstreaming, to promote best practices in GEF projects focused on production landscapes and seascapes, and to assess the effectiveness of such interventions. In 2013, the objective was to assess lessons learned following investments totaling over US$ 1.6 billion made since 2003 by the GEF in over 300 mainstreaming projects in 135 countries.  Case studies and perspectives on mainstreaming are also included. The report concludes that while progress has been made to mainstream biodiversity into broader policy and practice areas, it is clear that greater care needs to be brought to the design, implementation, and assessment of mainstreaming projects to inform and improve future efforts. Publication Date:  April 2014 Authors: Brian J. Huntley, Kent H. Redford. DOWNLOAD

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Assessing the Effects of Terrestrial Protected Areas on Human Well-Being

Establishing protected areas (PAs) has been one of the most common and successful interventions since the very beginning of the conservation movement. The process of protecting areas from threats posed by human activities will, by definition, inhibit some of these activities and therefore potentially have adverse impacts on the well-being of people living in or near PAs. However, these impacts could be balanced through the maintenance of valuable ecosystem services or the introduction of new livelihood options. Consequently, there is an on-going debate about whether the net impact of PAs on human well-being at local or regional scales is positive or negative. This STAP Advisory Document and associated Policy Brief Assessing the Effects of Terrestrial Protected Areas on Human Well-being reports on the results of a systematic review of evidence related to the impacts on human well-being arising from the establishment or maintenance of terrestrial PAs.  The evidence base provides a range of possible pathways of the impacts of PAs on human well-being (both positive and negative). However, it provides very little support for decision making on how to maximise positive impacts or minimise negative ones. Recommendations are made to improve the design of future studies and to replicate this study to focus specifically on the rich portfolio of GEF terrestrial protected area projects to better understand the empirical evidence of impacts of PAs on human well-being and to develop a streamlined methodology for PA projects in the GEF portfolio to be tested in GEF-6, with the goal of improving their overall effectiveness and post-project sustainability. Publication Date:  April 2014 Authors:  Andrew S. Pullin, Sarah Dalrymple, Neal R. Haddaway, Teri Knight, Mukdarut Bangpan, Kelly Dickson,  Hanan Hauari, Carol Vigurs, Sandy Oliver, John R. Healey, Neal Hockley, Julia P.G. Jones. DOWNLOAD FULL REPORT DOWNLOAD POLICY BRIEF Appendices: Appendix 1 Appendix 2 Appendix 3 Appendix 4 Appendix 5 Appendix 6 Appendix 7 Appendix 8 Appendix 9 Appendix 10

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Experimental Project Designs in the Global Environment Facility

Designing projects to create evidence and catalyze investments to secure global environmental benefits The portfolio of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) should be based on the best evidence of what works to generate global environmental benefits. The GEF, however, should do more than simply act as a consumer of evidence. As one of the largest multilateral donors for environmental programs, the GEF should be a leader in the production of evidence. With multi-nation investments in common environmental policies and programs, the GEF is uniquely placed to generate credible evidence about improving the performance of environmental programs. Such evidence would not only increase the returns to GEF investments, but it can also catalyze broader investments and actions by making the connection between environmental investments and the effects of investments clearer to external audiences. This advisory document describes one important way in which the GEF can leverage its project investments to generate more credible evidence about what works and under what conditions: experimental project designs. Experimental designs imply that entire projects, or components of projects, are designed with the intention of better understanding the causal relationships between actions and desired effects. Publication Date: May 2012 Authors: Paul J. Ferraro DOWNLOAD

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Selection of Persistent Organic Pollutant Disposal Technology for the GEF

This advisory document builds on the original 2004 STAP study on the selection of POPs disposal technologies for GEF-financed projects, and utilizes experience gained during GEF-4. It is not intended to duplicate or supersede technology evaluations provided by the Basel Convention, Stockholm Convention, or other groups, but rather seeks to lay out guidance on the attributes that technologies should demonstrate when GEF funding is involved. The critical elements in POPs technology selection outlined herein can be used to help streamline the design, development, review, implementation and execution of GEF funded POPs disposal projects. This will provide a consistent overall framework for the application of GEF funding in this area, enhance appropriateness of technology to local project conditions, and also support clearer lessons learned as the portfolio of projects matures, enabling further refinement in the approach to project design and maximization of impact and sustainability. The STAP concludes that destruction cannot be addressed in isolation, but instead, the application of POPs disposal technology should be viewed as one part of an overall POPs management process or system. This system includes steps taken in advance of the actual disposal or destruction to identify, capture, secure, and prepare POPs stockpiles and wastes for disposal, as well as post-destruction steps to manage emissions, by-products and residuals. Publication Date: November 2011 Authors: Richard J. Cooke and William F. Carroll DOWNLOAD

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Hypoxia and Nutrient Reduction in the Coastal Zone

Advice for Prevention, Remediation and Research Reported cases of coastal hypoxia or low oxygen areas have doubled in each of the last four decades, threatening global environment benefits in most of the Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) in which GEF supports programs. GEF requested STAP to review the scientific evidence on coastal hypoxia and advise how to address the issue, beyond current actions. This STAP Advisory Document is based on a review of the scientific evidence, and scientific and management expert consultations. It has been reviewed by subject matter experts, the GEF Secretariat, the GEF International Waters Task Force and GEF agencies. STAP concludes that the growing problem of coastal hypoxia requires accelerated GEF attention.

Publication Date: September 2011 Authors: Meryl Williams and Nicole Harper DOWNLOAD

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Sustainable Low-Carbon Transport

This report defines “Sustainable low-carbon transport” as a strategy to provide economically viable infrastructure and operation that offers safe and secure access for both persons and goods whilst reducing short and long term negative impact on the local and global environment. This is in conformity with the views of IPCC (2007) according to which transportation planning and policy has a direct linkage to sustainable development, which includes reducing oil imports, improvement of air quality, reducing traffic congestion and improving travelling facilities. Such a policy can have important synergies with reducing GHG emissions. Publication Date: November 2010 Authors: Holger Dalkmann and Cornie Huizenga DOWNLOAD

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The Evidence Base for Community Forest Management as a Mechanism for Supplying Global Environmental Benefits and Improving Local Welfare

 Community forest management (CFM) initiatives comprise a range of efforts to involve people who live in and around forests in forest management decisions. CFM initiatives often vest in communities some degree of decision-making power over forest management and rights to the benefits from such management. These initiatives are expected to result in more effective forest management, which is expected to help conserve biodiversity and ecosystem services and contribute to poverty reduction and economic development. CFM initiatives are common components in GEF-funded projects aimed at sustainable forest management and the protection of biodiversity and ecosystem services outside of government-managed protected areas. This advisory document summarizes the evidence base for the effectiveness of CFM initiatives in generating global, national, regional and local environmental benefits. It also summarizes evidence related to the socioeconomic impacts on participants. It was reviewed by two external reviewers, STAP panel members and STAP Secretariat staff.

Publication Date: September 2010 Authors: Diana Bowler and Andrew S. Pullin DOWNLOAD

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