“Social, Ecological and Agricultural Resilience in the Face of Climate Change” (SEARCH) is a three years regional project funded by the EU and implemented in five countries (Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, and Morocco). SEARCH aims to develop and pilot a resilience framework for adaptation to climate change in watershed ecosystems. Implementation will be piloted in demonstration sites to enable joint learning with stakeholders, through local action planning and testing of interventions designed to increase climate change resilience.
To achieve the desired objectives of the project the following methodologies and components were adopted in all phases of project:
- Capacity building in the use of tools to adapt to climate change, building and planning strategies by working, learning and exchange at various levels.
- Participatory planning and management.
- Experimentation through pilot projects.
- Documentation of methodologies and learning processes, as well as, exchange of valuable information and knowledge at all levels.
The SEARCH Partnership is facilitated by the following partners:
- Centre for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE) in Egypt.
- Coptic Evangelic Organization for Social Services (CEOSS) in Egypt.
- Arab Women Organization in Jordan
- Badia Research and development Center in Jordan
- Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) in Ramallah, Palestine
- Palestine Hydrological Group (PHG) in Ramallah, Palestine
- Society for the Protection on Nature in Lebanon (SPNL) in Lebanon.
- MADA Association in Lebanon.
- Abdelmalek Essaadi / Tetouan University in Morocco.
- IUCN Regional Office for West Asia (IUCN ROWA) in Jordan.
- IUCN Med in Malaga, Spain.
With support from
- IUCN WANI in Switzerland.
- Centre for Development Innovation (CDI) – Wageningen UR in Netherlands and Diversity –Associates DIV-A.
The participatory stakeholder planning approach, as developed by EMPOWERS, was adopted in the project. This approach is based on a process of “Stakeholder Dialogue and Concerted Action” (SDCA) at all institutional levels; national and local, to improve the resilience to climate change potential impacts.
The EMPOWERS Planning Cycle is made up of six principal steps;
- Visioning: initial problem identification, visioning, and scenario building
- Assessing: targeted data collection and analysis; creation of a shared information base
- Strategizing: development of strategies to meet the vision under different scenarios
- Planning: detailed planning based on most likely scenarios and related strategies
- Implementing: execution of plans
- Reflecting: analysis of monitoring and documentation to inform further
Figure 1 : The phases of the planning cycle
This approach differs from most in many aspects including;
- The fundamental importance of stakeholders’ involvement during all phases.
- The explicit acknowledgment of the “uncertainty” factor that exists in nearly all aspects of climate change which is handled by incorporating scenarios’ building into relevant phases of the cycle.
- Increase the capacity and knowledge of stakeholders and local communities, in the use of tools to adapt to climate change, and planning and strategizing through learning and exchange of information in regional networks.
- Local action planning for adaptation to climate change increases the institutional capacity and coordination and is reflected by using practical and participatory approaches in building livelihoods and ecosystem / biodiversity flexibility.
- Climate vulnerabilities and risks will be decreased in watersheds through the implementation of pilot projects at the local level.
- Practical tools / guides have been developed and implemented in partnership with the political decision-makers to contribute to the development of national strategies and sectoral plans for adaptation to climate change, poverty reduction and economic development.
Dissemination of the Toolkit:
With the support of GIZ, the Environmental Governance Programme prepared a dissemination plan of the SEARCH Toolkit, and dissemination was held on 2015, and ongoing.
Capacity Building Programme on the Toolkit:
An expert group was held on 11 May 2015 for the development of the outline of the capacity building programme.