World Network of Biosphere Reserves (WNBR)

© Atoll Ecosystem Project/Ministry of Housing & Environment
Baa Atoll, Maldives

Composed of 631 biosphere reserves in 119 countries, including 14 transboundary sites, the WNBR of the MAB Programme promotes North-South and South-South collaboration and represents a unique tool for international co-operation through sharing knowledge, exchanging experiences, building capacity and promoting best practices.

Vision

The World Network of Biosphere Reserves of the MAB Programme consists of a dynamic and interactive network of sites of excellence. It fosters the harmonious integration of people and nature for sustainable development through participatory dialogue; knowledge sharing; poverty reduction and human well-being improvements; respect for cultural values and society’s ability to cope with change - thus contributing to the Millenium Development Goals. Accordingly, the WNBR is one of the main international tools to develop and implement sustainable development approaches in a wide array of contexts.

Mission

© Tehuacán-Cuicatlán Reserva de la Biósfera
Tehuacán-Cuicatlán, Mexico

To ensure environmental, economic and social (including cultural and spiritual) sustainability through:

  • the development and coordination of a worldwide network of places acting as demonstration areas and learning sites with the aim of maintaining and developing ecological and cultural diversity, and securing ecosystem services for human well-being;
  • the development and integration of knowledge, including science, to advance our understanding of interactions between people and the rest of nature;
  • building global capacity for the management of complex socio-ecological systems, particularly through encouraging greater dialogue at the science-policy interface; environmental education; and multi-media outreach to the wider community.

To fulfil its mission and attain its vision, the WNBR relies on:

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