Learning Landscapes in Seram, Maluku

9-15 December 2019


In December 2019, Tanah Air Beta convened its annual landscape practitioners retreat in Maluku, Indonesia. The retreat involved a one-day seminar at Pattimura University in Ambon, a four-day workshop in Sawai, North Seram and a full day wrap up session back in Pattimura. Practitioners and researchers interested in reconciling conservation and development challenges at the landscape scale participated in the events together with people from local communities and NGOs. Our focus for the 2019 meeting was linking conservation science with practice, with emphasis on lessons learned from integrated landscape approaches may help to meet sustainability goals in Wallacea. 

The week began with the seminar at Pattimura University in Ambon, providing a forum for discussion among scientists, practitioners, and government staff in Maluku. During the presentations (listed below), participants identified potential opportunities for collaboration between local and international organizations in meeting the challenge of conducting interdisciplinary research on modified forest systems. In Wallacea, landscapes merge into seascapes, requiring a ‘ridge to reef’ approach to deal with conservation and development challenges. Participants noted the difficulties of attracting external support in Maluku due to inaccessibility and associated expenses. Yet the global importance of Maluku for terrestrial and marine biodiversity provides a strong impetus for collaboration. The region appears likely to experience increasing development pressures and building capacity to achieve a sustainable future for the region is a high priority. 

View the meeting report: December 2019

We are especially grateful to Universitas Pattimura for facilitating our visit to Maluku and contributing enthusiastically to the discussions. We look forward to more collaboration with the University in the future. We always appreciate the diversity of our group, including researchers from LIPI and several international universities, NGOs including Fauna & Flora International and Tropenbos, as well as ICRAF and CIFOR, and APRIL RER. We thank the communities that hosted us, especially Sawai village. We thank Masihulan, Melinani, and Huaulu villages for continuing to welcome us and share with us. We acknowledge those that could not join in Seram, such as University of Indonesia, Burung Indonesia and TAB members, and look forward to meeting again soon.