ISRIC recently got involved in a World Bank-funded project in Madagascar on Land Use Planning for Enhanced Resilience of Landscapes (LAUREL). The overall objective of the LAUREL project is to support a process of integrated multi-sectoral decision making for national landscape management in Madagascar, through improvement of spatial data on land degradation and by the development of a prototype modeling platform for simulating, evaluating and reorienting land use and changes in land uses.
The project is led by Wageningen University – SLM (Dr. Luuk Fleskens) and will run over 18 months (starting April 2017). Activities will be organized into two broad components:
- The first component is led by ISRIC and covers the development of a land degradation baseline, based on a) NDVI analysis as it was used in the GLADA project, enabling the identification of potential “hot spots” of degradation and “bright spots” of land improvement, and b) expert-based mapping at national level and at local level for selected “hot spots” and “bright spots”, using the WOCAT mapping method.
- The second component concerns the development of a prototype platform for simulating, evaluating, and re-orienting land use and land use change processes. The simulation platform is to be used by the Government to assess the consequences of alternative investment decisions on the achievement of development and environmental objectives (e.g. food security, forest cover, carbon storage).
The program complements the large Sustainable Landscape Management Project in Madagascar (PADAP in the French Acronym).