About ELD

The Economics of Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative was established in 2011 by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and the European Commission. The initiative is coordinated and supported by the ELD Secretariat, which is hosted by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

The initiative entered its second decade of activities. More than ever, this decade needs to bring "Transformative action for land".

Our Vision

 

The ELD Initiative aspires to a world in which land is managed in a sustainable manner that preserves and restores natural capital including soils, water, and biodiversity, enhances ecosystem services, ensures climate-resilient landscapes and food systems, provides livelihoods, and secures the well-being of people and the rest of nature. In this world, land degradation is at least net neutral and preferably significantly reversed.

Our Mission

 

The ELD Initiative makes the values of land and its ecosystem services count in decisions – hence uncovering the true costs and benefits of land degradation and sustainable land management.

We do this with the aim to inform, promote, and scale land solutions for transformative change; these solutions include sustainable land management and restoration practices, policy instruments and institutional design, and financing solutions and strategies.

In working at the science-policy-practice interface, ELD brings scientific knowledge and evidence into political and business discourses and decision making.


 

ELD action areas

The work of the ELD Initiative is organized in three strategic and interconnected action areas:

 


 

Our achievements over the last decade

   


 

ELD secretariat team

The ELD initiative is coordinated and supported by the ELD Secretariat, which is hosted by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) at the Sector Project on Soil Protection, Combating Desertification, Sustainable Land Management

Nina Bisom

Position  ELD Initiative Secretariat Coordinator Location  ELD Initiative Secretariat, Bonn, Germany With ELD since  Nina joined the ELD Initiative in July 2021 What she does  As coordinator, Nina is responsible for the synchronization of partners and donors, strategic exchange and policy dialogue, internal and external communication, internal work streams, and dialogue with potential partners and partner countries. Background  Nina holds a Master’s Degree in Political Sciences. Before she joined ELD, Nina worked for GIZ in different projects and positions. From 2006 to 2013, she worked on water policy issues, giving policy advice to the BMZ as well as between 2009 and 2013 to the Burundian government, supporting the Burundian water sector reforms and water resources management. She then worked on a GIZ sector project on environmental policy in Bonn, which she coordinated as team leader from 2017 to 2021.

Mark Schauer

Position  ELD Initiative Senior Programme Officer – External Relations Location  ELD Initiative Secretariat, Bonn, Germany With ELD since  Mark re-joined the ELD Initiative in January 2024. What he does  Mark is co-responsible for the communication with partners and donors, strategic exchange and policy dialogue and dialogue with potential partners and partner countries, facilitating synergies between the three Rio Conventions in ELD processes. Background  Mark holds a master’s degree in Forest Management from the University of Göttingen, Germany. After his graduation and gaining hands-on experience in forest management, he worked in Europe, southern Africa and southern Asia on natural resource management and nature conservation, focusing on this issue's interconnectedness with development, poverty alleviation and institutional support programmes. He re-joined the ELD Secretariat in January 2024 after spending some years in a Forest Landscape Project with GIZ in Rwanda. Before joining GIZ, Mark worked for UNEP, the German Federal Ministry for Environment and the Forest Service. Mark’s work has for a long time been focused on coordinating projects which link economic and ecologic issues, providing economic information for better decision making in the context of sustainable ecosystem management.

Waltraud Ederer

Position  Natural Capital Officer Location  ELD Initiative Secretariat, Bonn, Germany With ELD since  Waltraud re-joined the ELD Initiative in late 2019, after having already been part of the team in 2015 What she does  Waltraud is mainly working on topics related to the ELD workstreams on natural capital and financing for sustainable land management Background  Before Waltraud joined ELD, she worked at the interface of climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. Comprehensive climate risk management and the policy discourse on Loss and Damage built the core of her work as policy advisor. Coordinating capacity development formats and climate risk assessments (incl. economic evaluation) in partner countries used to be an important part of her work. She holds a Master’s Degree in Sustainability Economics and Management.

Johannes Kruse

Position  ELD Project Manager Location  ELD Initiative Secretariat, Bonn, Germany With ELD since  Johannes joined the ELD Initiative in May 2022. What he does  Johannes primarily works on network development, knowledge management and the science-policy interface. He also coordinates the communications work of ELD. Background  Before joining ELD, Johannes worked as a policy advisor to the environment division of the German development ministry and coordinator of the BMZ Green Value Initiative – Natural Capital in Africa. He has extensive experience with integrating the value of nature in decision-making and policies in partner countries, development banks, and accounting systems. He holds a Master’s degree in Sustainability Economics and Management and a B.A. in Philosophy and Economics.