Land is finite in quantity. Competing demands for its goods and services are increasing pressures on land resources in virtually every country.

The Global Land Outlook (GLO)

The big picture

A changing climate, population growth, and economic globalization are driving land use change and poor land management practices at all scales.

For the most part, these changes and practices will continue to degrade the “real” current and future value of our land resources, including soil, water and biodiversity.

Now is the time to recognize the biophysical limits to land productivity and the need to restore multi-functionality in both our natural and production landscapes.

Evidence strongly suggests the need to act in the short term to avoid potentially irreversible negative outcomes in the medium to long term.

The Global Land Outlook presents a strategic vision to transform the way we think about, value, use and manage our land resources while planning for a more resilient and sustainable future.

The Global Land Outlook (GLO)

The 1st edition of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification’s (UNCCD) Global Land Outlook (GLO) will be published in 2017 in both print and digital formats. The GLO is expected to be the new flagship publication of the UNCCD, akin to the CBD’s Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO) and the UNEP’s Global Environmental Outlook (GEO).

The GLO will be a strategic communications platform and publication that demonstrates the central importance of land quality to human well-being, assesses current trends in land conversion, degradation and loss, identifies the driving factors and analyzes the impacts, provides scenarios for future challenges and opportunities, and presents a new and transformative vision for land management policy, planning and practice at global and national scales.

Bringing together a diverse group of international experts and partners, the GLO will address the future challenges for the management and restoration of land resources in the context of sustainable development, including:

  • Food, water and energy security;
  • Climate change and biodiversity conservation;
  • Urban, peri-urban and infrastructure development;
  • Land tenure, governance and gender; and
  • Migration, conflict and human security.

An integral part of the GLO’s digital platform will be the direct linkage with, and support from, the UNCCD’s Knowledge Hub, which allows users to perform advanced searches within the relevant knowledge bases of our partners. Other unique features of the 1st edition of the GLO are the:

Working Papers Series - a supplementary set of publications to provide contributors with an expanded format for disseminating their analyses;

Scaling Up Best Practices - a new vision for replicating and expanding sustainable land management practices to achieve multiple development objectives; and

Land Management Index - a mechanism by which to explore the utility of using existing indicators to advocate for better land management policy, planning and practice.

Why a Global Land Outlook?

The loss in both the quality and quantity of healthy and productive land resources is an immediate global concern, especially in developing countries and those with a high proportion of fragile and vulnerable drylands. As a symbol and global champion of such concerns, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) recognizes that halting and reversing land degradation is one of the key sustainable development priorities for most of the 168 affected country Parties.

In response to this global challenge, the UNCCD secretariat and its partners identified the need to create a strategic communications publication and platform, entitled the Global Land Outlook, in order to facilitate insightful debate and discourse on a new and transformative vision for land management policies, planning and practices at global and national scales.

The 1st edition of the Global Land Outlook (GLO), to be published in 2017 in both print and digital formats, is being generously supported by the European Commission, the Governments of Korea, Italy and Switzerland, and the United Nations Development Program. A GLO Steering Committee, composed primarily of representatives from the partner organizations listed on the right, was established in July 2015 to guide the development of the 1st edition.

Land Degradation Neutral World

SDG 15: Life on Land. On 25 September 2015, 193 countries came together in New York to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs. SDG 15 calls for the protection, restoration and sustainable management of land-based ecosystems. In doing so target 15.3 specifically aims to achieve a Land Degradation Neutral World by the year 2030.