Keynote speakers

Throughout the week several keynote speakers addressed the conference theme Ecosystem Services for Eco-civilization: Restoring connections between people and landscapes through nature-based solutions. Perspectives on this theme from science, policy and practice backgrounds were presented.

Below an overview is given of the keynote speakers. A click on their name leads to the speakers bio, a click on their presentation title will open their presentation in PDF.

Special guest and keynote speaker

HRH Princess Basma bint Ali, Royal Botanic Garden, Jordan

Enhancing Ecosystem Services through Ecological Restoration for Nature and People

Keynotes

Robert Costanza, ANU, Australia

Twenty years of ecosystem services

Sonya Dewi, ICRAF, Indonesia

Achieving Green Growth through Land Use Planning for Multiple Ecosystem Services 

Helen Ding, WRI, USA

Economics and finance of landscape restoration: Opportunities, challenges and the way forward  

B. Larry Li, University of California at Riverside, USA

The way forward: a biophysical exploration in quantifying ecosystem services

Junguo Liu, Southern University of Science and Technology, China

Ecological restoration and Eco-civilization in China

Zhiyun Ouyang, CAS, China

Mainstreaming Ecosystem Services into policy making in China

Simone Quatrini, UNCCD, Germany

Unlocking finance for sustainable development: the land degradation neutrality fund (presentation can't be made available online)

 

Special guest and keynote speaker

 

HRH Princess Basma bint Ali

HRH Princess Basma bint Ali served for over 12 years in the Jordanian Armed Forces. She attained the rank of Major and was awarded the King Hussein Gold Medal for Excellence in 1995, as well as the Order of Merit from the Jordanian Armed Forces in 1998.

In 1995 she co-founded the Royal Marine Conservation Society of Jordan (JREDS). To this day, she continues to serve as Chairperson of the Board of Directors. In 2000 Princess Basma bint Ali retired so as to dedicate herself fully to the environment.

She founded the Royal Botanic Garden of Jordan in 2005. Princess Basma bint Ali was honored as a Hero for the Planet by Time Magazine in 1998, the first Arab woman to be featured. In 2002 she was elected as a laureate of the Global 500 Roll of Honor for Environmental Achievement (UNEP). Again she was the first Arab woman and, in fact, the only individual on the Roll of Honor, the other laureates being organizations.

In 2011 she was awarded the Henry Shaw Medal by the Missouri Botanical Garden. She serves on numerous national and international committees and organizations promoting sustainable development and biodiversity conservation.

Keynote speaker biographies

Robert Costanza, ANU, Australia

Professor Robert Costanza is a Vice Chancellor’s Chair in Public Policy at the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University. He is also currently a Senior Fellow at the National Council on Science and the Environment in the US, a Senior Research Fellow at the Stockholm Resilience Center, an Affiliate Fellow at the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics, a deTao Master of Ecological Economics at the deTao Masters Academy, China, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (UK). Professor Costanza’s transdisciplinary research integrates the study of humans and the rest of nature to address research, policy and management issues at multiple time and space scales, from small watersheds to the global system. He is co-founder and past-president of the International Society for Ecological Economics, and founding editor of the society’s journal, Ecological Economics. He currently serves on the editorial board of ten other international academic journals. He is also founding co-editor in chief of Solutions - a unique hybrid academic/popular journal. Professor Costanza is the author or co-author of over 600 scientific papers and 27 books. His work has been cited more than 75,000 times in Google Scholar with an h-index of 109. More than 300 interviews and reports on his work have appeared in various popular media and he has written over 70 articles for the popular press.

Sonya Dewi, ICRAF, Indonesia

Sonya Dewi is the ICRAF country programme coordinator of Indonesia and is a Senior Landscape Ecologist. She is based in Southeast Asia Regional office of ICRAF in Bogor. Sonya received her Ph.D. in Theoretical Ecology from the Australian National University in 1997. During her more than twenty years of professional career as a researcher, she focuses on the understanding of the trade-offs and integration between conservation and development agendas at the landscape level across different contexts, and on identifying options to change the trajectories in several countries, such as Indonesia, India and Brazil. Land science has continuously been the bases of her multi-disciplinary research. She has embraced climate change mitigation issues into the landscape governance, particularly in the development and analysis of national and sub-national level carbon accounting and monitoring, peatland strategy, carbon footprint of palm oil production, and national level REDD+ strategy. More recently she has been actively promoting the integrated and inclusive spatial land use planning in rural areas for low emission development and for multiple ecosystem services through the development of a negotiation support tool, LUMENS. The tool has been widely adopted in Indonesia and also introduced to some other tropical countries such as Vietnam, Peru and Cameroon. The proof of concepts and proof of applications through facilitation, policy engagement, and capacity strengthening programs in several districts and provinces in Indonesia have been built. The tool has been used in developing Green Growth Plan for one particular province in Indonesia as a roadmap for public-private-people partnerships in achieving Sustainable Goals.

Helen Ding, WRI, USA

Dr. Helen Ding is an Environmental Economist with the Economics Center at the World Resources Institute. Her work primarily focuses on terrestrial ecosystems and involves the development of economic models to measure and demonstrate the economic value of natural resources for better governance and business decision-making. At WRI, she works as a cross-programmatic economist to support the analysis and development of practical tools in Programs across the institute. Amongst others, Helen contributes to Land and Resource Rights Initiative and develops studies that demonstrate the essential economic benefits of land tenure security in developing countries. She also supports WRI Global Restoration Initiative to ensure the consistency and robustness of economic analyses that are undertaken in different geographies. In addition, Helen supports the Land Use work of the New Climate Economy project and works closely with other WRI programs on subjects related to environmental and natural resource economics. Helen is an active global traveler and has country experiences in Africa, China, Latin America, Pacific islands, the EU and USA.

B. Larry Li, University of California at Riverside, USA

Educated in China, B. Larry Li is a tenured, full Professor of Ecology and Directors of International Center for Ecology and Sustainability, and U.S. Department of Agriculture-China MOST Joint Research Center for AgroEcology and Sustainability at University of California-Riverside. He has a broad interdisciplinary background and experience in mathematical, statistical and computational modeling applications in ecological studies. He published more than 230 refereed journal articles, 30 book chapters and proceedings papers, and 8 books or edited special issues; Google Scholar based H index is 47 (based on the statistics in September 2017). Among his many honors and awards, he was elected to be Honorary Professor of Scientific Council of Russian Academy of Sciences (2005), IHE Fellow (1988), AAAS Fellow (2006), DeTao Master, and received the 2015 Prigogine Gold Medal (only one leading scientist per year to be awarded in ecological systems internationally). He is also Founding Editor-in-Chief of two international journals: Ecological Complexity (Elsevier) and Journal of Arid Land (Springer Nature).  He chaired and co-chaired the successful Beijing Eco Summit 2007 and Eco Summit 2012, Columbus, Ohio. He now presides Eco Summit Foundation.

Junguo Liu, Southen University of Science and Technology, China

Dr. Junguo Liu is a professor at Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech), China. He has earned an excellent international reputation through his contributions to the fields of hydrology and ecological restoration. He is a target leader of the Decade Program 2013-2022 (Panta Rhei) of the International Association for Hydrological Sciences (IAHS), the Chair of the working group on Water Scarcity Assessment of the Panta Rhei program, and the vice-president of the Chinese Working Committee for the IAHS-Panta Rhei. He organized and co-chaired the first International Conference on Hydrological Knowledge Innovation and Practice in Developing Countries in 2016 in China. This conference has led to the mile-stone document “The Shenzhen Declaration on Global Hydrological Science and Practice”. Prof. Liu has made an amazing contribution to ecological restoration in China. He founded two ecological restoration organizations in China on his initiative: the Society for Ecological Rehabilitation of Beijing (SERB), founded in 2014, is the first society recognized by the Chinese government which specifically focuses on eco-hydrological restoration. The Union of Societies for Ecological Restoration and Environmental Protection (USEREP), founded in 2016, is the first officially recognized federation of Chinese organizations, which is specifically focused on the water and ecological restoration. Prof. Liu is the first president of SERB, as well as the first Chair of USEREP. Both the organizations are playing important roles in safeguarding China’s water and ecological security.

Prof. Liu is author of over 120 peer-reviewed papers, including articles in Science, Nature, PNAS, Nature Communications and Science Advances. He also has published 4 major books and numerous chapters. In recognition of his outstanding work, he has won a number of awards, including the Outstanding Young Scientist Award of the European Geosciences Union (2009), ProSPER.Net-Scopus Young Scientist Award & Winner in the field “Biodiversity and Natural Resources Management” (2011), the Young Researcher Gold Award by China Science Daily (2012), the Outstanding Young Scientist Award from the National Natural Science Foundation in China (2016), and the 2017 Communication Award of the Society for Ecological Restoration (SER).

Zhiyun Ouyang, CAS, China

Zhiyun Ouyang, Ph.D, professor, is the Deputy Director of Research Center for Eco-environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences; and vice president of Ecological Society of China, and vice president of Chinese society of Ecological Economics. Dr. Ouyang's research interests include ecosystem assessment, ecosystem services, ecosystem restoration and biodiversity conservation. Recent years, he has made his main efforts to push ecosystem service assessment and its policy applications in conservation, restoration and land management in China, including ecosystem service evaluation, ecological asset and Gross Ecosystem Product (GEP) accounting, ecosystem service zoning of China, ecosystem assessment of China, biodiversity conservation and nature reserve management, restoration of degraded ecosystems in ecological fragile region. Prof. Ouyang has published over 400 peer-view articles, among which over 150 papers in international journals. In addition, he has published 10 books. Prof. Ouyang won three Second Prizes of National Science and Technology Progress, and the Outstanding Science and Technology Achievement Prize of Chinese Academy of Science.

Simone Quatrini, UNCCD, Germany

Simone Quatrini is flagship programme coordinator at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). Since 2014, he has led the development of the Land Degradation Neutrality Fund (LDN Fund), a USD 300 million impact investment fund recently launched at the UNCCD COP13 in Ordos (China). The LDN Fund is a first-of-its-kind blended finance vehicle anchored to a specific target of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals agenda. He is also a member of the World Economic Forum’s Transformative Leaders Network, and of the University of Zurich’s Research Priority Programme on Global Change and Biodiversity. His main expertise is on public-private partnerships, blended finance, market-based incentives and innovative investment vehicles for sustainable development. Before the LDN Fund, he coordinated the Strategic Programmes of the UN Global Mechanism, including policy & investment analysis and private sector engagement. Prior to that, he was information systems manager and financial analyst at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). Before joining the UN in 1999, he was a liaison officer to the European Commission for the banking industry and marketing manager at IBM.

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