Food and agricultural production account for a huge share of land use and land cover change on our planet, with a long, well-established legacy of detrimental effects on biological diversity.
And yet, although less diverse than corresponding “natural” systems, these working agricultural landscapes also can provide important habitat values and other ecosystem functions. Working landscapes in tropical and sub-tropical SE Asia and increasingly arid irrigated systems and cattle grazing systems in California, USA, provide practical points of reference in seeking a better balance between agricultural production and recovery of ecosystem services, including biodiversity conservation.
Professor Tom Tomich, Founder of the Food Systems Lab & Distinguished Professor of Sustainability Science and Policy, and Professor Yadvinder Malhi, Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on Biodiversity and Society, will discuss, after Professor Tomich's presentation, the major practical and scientific challenges. These include embracing multi-functionality and needs to attain a just balance of local interests and national commitments, and associated implications for institutions, collaborations, and human resources necessary to shift our management paradigms.
This is a joint event with the ECI Food Systems Transformation Group
Professor Thomas Tomich
Founder, Food Systems Lab & Distinguished Professor of Sustainability Science and Policy
Professor Tomich has 25+ years of leadership in sustainability science, integrated ecosystem assessment, and food policy. From rainforest conservation in the Amazon to economic development strategy in Tajikistan and his current role in food systems informatics, Tom brings global perspective and an innovative and pragmatic approach to sustainability.
He serves as an advisor to governments, international organisdations, and companies, notably 10 years as a policy advisor with the Harvard Institute for International Development and four years as a member of the CGIAR's Independent Science and Partnership Council.
Raised on a small family farm in northern California, Tom received his BA from the University of California, Davis, and his PhD in agricultural and food system economics from Stanford. Tom spent most of his career abroad, including significant periods in Egypt, Indonesia, and Kenya. Tom returned to California in 2007 and is distinguished professor of sustainability science and policy and the founder of the Food Systems Lab at the University of California, Davis.
Professor Yadvinder Malhi
Director, Oxford Martin Programme on Biodiversity and Society
Yadvinder Malhi is Professor of Ecosystem Science at the School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford, Programme Leader of the Ecosystems Group at the Environmental Change Institute and the Jackson Senior Research Fellow at Oriel College, Oxford.
He is a Lead Researcher on the the Oxford Martin Programme on Biodiversity and Society and Director of the Oxford Centre for Tropical Forests, a network of university departments, NGOs and local businesses that seeks to address the major issues facing the future of tropical forests in the 21st century.
He is also a Visiting Professor at Imperial College, London and part of their programme on Grand Challenges in Ecosystems and the Environment, an Honorary Research Fellow at the Institute of the Environment and the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), and the NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in the UK.
He leads the Ecosystems Programme of the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University, which is composed of an Ecosystems Lab focused on the natural science of tropical forests and global change, and a Forest Governance Group focussed on social science and policy issues around the protection of tropical forests.
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