2016: Sustainable Development Goals in Deltas

The ESPA Deltas Project Final Conference

22nd to 23rd November 2016

Dining Room, The Royal Society, 6-9 Carlton House Terrace, St. James’s, London, SW1Y 5AG


SDGs in deltas 2016: Agenda FINAL


  • Linkages between SDGs and Deltas
  • Deltas and approaches to sustainability
  • Integrated approach to delta analysis in Bangladesh
  • Generalising the lessons for deltas
  • The future of delta assessment and the SDGs

Poster Submission

We welcome poster submissions on one of the following themes by Friday 21st October 2016.
  • Delta Governance
  • Ecosystem Services and Human Wellbeing in Deltas
  • Biophysical Changes
  • Delta Livelihoods
  • Integrated Frameworks to Assess Deltas
  • Science Supporting Policy Formulation in Deltas

The Ecosystem Services of river deltas often support high population densities, estimated at over 500 million people globally, with particular concentrations in South, South-East and East Asia and Africa. Further, a large proportion of delta populations experience extremes of poverty and are highly vulnerable to the environmental and ecological stress and degradation that is occurring. More generally, deltas are recognised as a hotspot for climate change and development.

The “Assessing Health, Livelihoods, Ecosystem Services And Poverty Alleviation In Populous Deltas” (the ESPA Deltas project) is funded by the Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) programme to analyse and understand these issues using coastal Bangladesh as a case study. The overarching aim is to provide policy makers with the knowledge and tools to enable them to evaluate the effects of policy decisions on ecosystem services and people's livelihoods. Hence there is a vision of linking science to policy at the landscape scale. We addressed a number of questions:

  • ·         What are the key drivers of change of ecosystem services?
  • ·         How are ecosystem services changing with time?
  • ·         How will changes in ecosystem services affecting delta residents, particularly the poor?
  • ·         How can the related policy processes be best informed by science-based evidence?

This included an innovative household survey based on socio-ecological zones, the development of an integrated model coupling ecosystem services to livelihoods -- the Delta Dynamic Integrated Emulator Model (ΔDIEM) -- and working closely with the Planning Commission of the Bangladesh Government and other national stakeholders.

At the same time, the world has conducted a major effort to develop and agree the Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs) which will fundamentally shape government policies and development goals in the coming decades.

This conference will disseminate the results from the ESPA Deltas project in the broader context of the SDGs. Experience from a number of other deltas from across the globe will be presented and the next steps to further develop, transfer and operationalise these insights will be considered.

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