The fast paced UrbanByNature Korea webinar series was held between June 9- July 14, 2021. Webinars were organised and moderated jointly by ICLEI Korea, ESP Asia RO, Korea Environment Institute and National Institute of Ecology with financial support from ICLEI Europe, Gangwon Provincial government, Changwon city government, Suwon Research Institute, and Changwon National University with a keen interest on effective implementation of nature-based solutions. These events brought together local officials, stakeholders, NGOs, researchers, green business entities and students to contribute to making a roadmap for Korean local governments and to prepare action plans achieving Biodiversity targets and related local environmental goals for sustainable development and human wellbeing in urban areas.
Respective sessions focused on urban forests, green infrastructure, financial resources and governance to mainstream nature-based approaches into planning and practice at a local scale. In addition, questions from the participants were answered live on YouTube.
Here are the main takeaways from the webinar series:
- Firstly, although the term "Nature-based Solutions" is not commonly used in Korea, the concept is present in various policies on topics such as Urban Forests, Low impact development (L.I.D) and Green Infrastructure.
- Secondly, financial resources are essential to the implementation of local NBS, but various issues need to be addressed so that budgets from local governments are secured for this purpose, including the lack of an evaluation system.
- Thirdly, from planning and implementation to evaluation, public participation is critical to the success of NBS. The Korean society will have to find ways to adopt collaborative approaches to the implementation of NBS in the future.
Throughout the webinar series, strategies to implement NBS in Korea were discussed in light of key issues related to technology, finance, policy, evaluation, and planning. As a follow-up plan, Korea's UrbanByNature hub will organize workshops to discuss ways to address NBS in regional biodiversity strategies and to engage public and private stakeholders in relevant industry sectors.
UrbanByNature Korea programme
The UrbanByNature programme was conducted in Korean, with contributions in English from speakers in Europe.