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GEF UNEP Reindeer Herding and Resilience project will have its side event at the 7th GEF Assembly in Vancouver, Canada on Tuesday August 22, 2023. GEF Assembly 2023 logo

The session brings together global nomadic youth to discuss the capacity of indigenous herders to reduce land degradation and improve the provision of ecosystem services by increasing community resilience as part of the global knowledge-sharing component of the GEF-UNEP 10545 Reindeer Herding and Resilience Project.

About the Side Event

The objective of the Side Event: The objective of the side event is to share the experiences and challenges of nomadic reindeer herders in different regions of the world, and to explore how their traditional knowledge and practices can contribute to enhancing the resilience of pastoral ecosystems and societies in the face of climate change and land degradation.

Outcomes of the Side Event: 

  • Increased awareness and recognition of the role and value of nomadic reindeer herding as a sustainable livelihood and a custodian of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
  • Enhanced dialogue among young nomadic reindeer herders, indigenous organizations, researchers, policy makers, and other stakeholders on how to support and strengthen the adaptive capacity and resilience of nomadic communities and their ecosystems.
  • Identification of best practices, lessons learned, and recommendations for scaling up and replicating successful initiatives.

Target Audience:

  • Representatives of nomadic reindeer herding communities from different regions.
  • Indigenous organizations and networks that work on issues related to nomadic reindeer herding and pastoralism.
  • Researchers and experts who have knowledge and experience on nomadic reindeer herding, pastoral ecosystems, traditional knowledge, climate change adaptation, land degradation neutrality, and ecosystem restoration.
  • Policy makers and practitioners from governments, intergovernmental organizations, civil society organizations, private sector, and media who are interested in learning more about nomadic reindeer herding and its contribution to global environmental challenges.;



  • 09:00 - 09:10: Opening remarks by UNEP representative
  • 09:10 - 09:30: Presentation by GEF-UNEP Reindeer Herding and Resilience Project coordinator on the project overview, objectives, activities, results, and impacts
  • 09:30-09:35 Video presentation by the Dukha reindeer herders
  • 09:35 - 10:00: Panel discussion by nomadic reindeer herders from different regions on their experiences, challenges, opportunities, and aspirations for enhancing their resilience and sustainability
  • 10:00 - 10:20: Q&A session with the audience
  • 10:20 - 10:30: Closing remarks by UNEP representative

Guest Speakers:

  • Susan Gardner, Director Ecosystems Division, UNEP, (Moderator)
  • Svein Mathiesen, ICR, Norway
  • Anders Oskal, ICR Executive Director, Norway
  • Issat Turi, ICR, Norway
  • Nils-Gustu Kuhmunen, ICR, Sweden
  • Marina Tonkopeeva, ICR & UArctic EALÁT Institute, Norway 
  • Khongorzul Mungunshagai, Dukha reindeer herder, Mongolia (virtually)
  • Khuderbat Zorigt, Dukha reindeer herder, Mongolia (virtually)
  • Uranbayar Bat Erdene, Dukha reindeer herder, Mongolia (virtually)



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