Remaking a world in peril: forging collaboration for a secure and sustainable future

20-30 July 2021


Working in collaboration with UNCCD and IUCN, the Caux Dialogue on Environment and Security has been bringing together policy-makers, farmers, NGOs, community leaders, businesses, young social entrepreneurs and investors, in one of the first international forums to spotlight the links between sustainable land management and peace.

This year’s forum will provide a unique opportunity for over 400 of the world’s leading thinkers and representatives to convene virtually and discuss ways in which we can together accelerate global action on environment conservation and restoration.  

The programme of the Dialogue will consist of workshops on sustainable living and environmental leadership addressing the subjects of climate change, plastic, land restoration and oceans. It will also include formative plenaries shared with the Summer Academy on Climate, Land and Security (26-30 July 2021), complemented by informal workshops with a creative touch.


Why do land and security solutions need to be forged together to respond to the threats posed by climate change and create a more peaceful world?


Land conflicts have been taking place since time immemorial. Land is associated with livelihood, living space, territory, even national identity. Nearly all of humanity’s food needs depend on one hand-span of soil - yet an estimated 34 million tonnes of topsoil are lost to erosion every year. Land degradation, climate change, population pressure, conflict and poor governance can all pile up, causing a direct negative impact on the health and livelihoods of 1.5 billion people.

On the other hand, there is growing evidence that integrating land and more broadly – environmental - restoration with community-based peacebuilding can create a virtuous cycle leading to both environmental and social recovery, and contributing to climate change adaptation and mitigation. A key constraint to this approach is weak cooperation between sectors and the subsequent need to build trust to enable effective governance of shared natural resources.


CDLS 2018


Forum Objectives

  • Empowering environmental action and growing the next generation of sustainability leaders around the world.
  • Creating a deeper understanding of the main challenges at the interface of land restoration, climate change mitigation and adaptation, human security, migration and conflict;
  • Increased capacity to respond more effectively to climate, land and security challenges as policymakers and practitioners;
  • Creating an opportunity to discuss the importance of complementary issues and solutions such as circular economy, water resource management and regenerative agriculture.
  • Exchange views among peers and global experts and practitioners from the Summer Academy, the Caux Dialogue on Environment and Security and the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.

Who should attend

The Dialogue’s target audiences are environment and security professionals from the public, non-profit and private sectors:

  • civil servants
  • youth activists
  • community leaders
  • researchers
  • diplomats
  • military
  • private sector representatives
  • community leaders
  • NGOs
  • International organisations

to create the global cooperation that will be required to respond to the climate, land and security challenges of the 21st century!


Bremley Lyngdoh CDLS 2019


Plenary 1 (Open Panel): Navigating climate peril: what kind of leadership will it take?


When: Monday 26 July, 14:00 - 15:15 CEST

Chair: Ms Anna Brach, Head of Human Security, Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP)


  • Martin Frick, Deputy to the Special Envoy for the UN Food Systems Summit 2021 at United Nations (video message)
  • Ambassador Doreen de Brum, Permanent Representative of Marshall Islands to the United Nations Office at Geneva
  • Major General Muniruzzaman (Retd), Chairman, Global Military Advisory Council on Climate Change (GMACCC) and President, Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS)


Plenary 2: From evidence to impact: advancing solutions for landscapes, livelihoods and peace


When: Tuesday, 27 July, 11:30 - 12:45 CEST

Chair: Dr Alan Channer, Initiatives for Land, Lives and Peace


  • Mr Steve Killelea, Founder & Executive Chairman, Institute of Economics and Peace
  • Dr Antje Herrberg, Senior Mediation Advisor, European External Action Service
  • Mr Luc Gnacadja, Design 4 Sustainability, Past Executive Secretary of the UNCCD (2007-2013), Minister of Environment and Urban Development (Benin, 1999-2005)


Plenary 3: Getting climate finance to the local level: challenges, opportunities and way forward


When: Wednesday 28 July, 14:00 - 15:15

Chair: Louise Brown, Founding Director, Triple Capital, Namibia


  • Mr David Jackson, Director of Local Development Finance at UNCDF
  • Mr Al Hamdou Dorsouma, OIC for the Director, Climate Change and Green Growth, African Development Bank

CDLS 2019 Chau Duncan


Workshop 1: Plastics & Single-use Consumption: Inspiring Sytematic Change through Personal Transformation

Moderator: Sofia Sydorenko, representative of Zero Waste Alliance Ukraine and Foundations for Freedom

When: 20 July 2021 - 16:00 CEST (1.5 hours)


For a long while single use and overconsumption have been seen as a completely normal way of living. As a result, we are now facing multiple environmental issues from a waste crisis and toxic  leakages into nature, to climate change. There is a solution to all of these issues and now is the time to implement it. We can start by reducing  overconsumption.

The main idea of this workshop is to rethink the concept of single use (of plastics in particular) through personal transformation. We will hear several stories about speakers’ own  path of tackling waste and about the search for systemic change. We will also present and discuss impactful solutions which can be implemented by all of us on a daily basis such as reusables, refillables, repairables, among others. The workshop will have an artistic accompaniment and involve music and poetry, so be prepared to get inspired. Come and join us on a  journey to a bright and wasteless future!


Workshop 2: Regeneration through Innovation: blending technology and decentralised business models

Moderator: Dr. Lauren Fletcher, co-founder Beta Earth Venture Studio,  Steering Group member of Initiatives of Land, Lives and Peace

When: 23 July 2021 - 16:00 CEST (1.5 hours)


How might we equip and empower local communities to become environmental stewards? Can we use technology and innovative financial instruments to enable global regeneration, while putting people at the centre? This panel will showcase innovative solutions that address the issues of climate change and ecosystem restoration. With many solutions becoming available both in technology and finance sectors, it is crucially important that they empower people who are taking care of the world's soils, water and forests. The speakers from impact investing, tech-driven start-ups and non-profit sectors will showcase their solutions that challenge conventional approaches to international development. The discussion will focus on people-centered design and how we can best create companies and organisations that benefit people and nature. We welcome everyone's contribution and hope for active participation.  


Workshop 3: Synergies in security: Soldiers, climate warriors and peacemakers

Moderator: Dr P. Rundell CBE FSS, Conflict and Strategy Advisor

When: TBC


This workshop will bring together voices from the defence and security agencies in the global South with colleagues from NATO and other Northern bodies, academics and peacebuilding practitioners to explore ways in which positive dynamics in land restoration and community trust-building can provide a synergy with protective security.

They will bring to this their perspectives both on the opportunities which regeneration and trust-building bring, and the hazards that attend uncritical efforts to tackle one or other aspect of the challenge without bearing in mind its other dimensions.  In this way we expect to generate lessons from each others’ experience, energy from each others’ enthusiasm, and hope from each others’ triumphs. 

“Hard” security is certainly hard to get right, and partnerships between defence agencies, peace activists and climate warriors may seem unlikely.  But this workshop is designed to explore our common objectives and the toolkits we can each bring to meet the challenge which climate change, violent conflict and environmental degradation pose – and the opportunities emerging from collaboration to reverse damaging spirals and create shared progress.








related stories

CDES 2020 IofC Bards meditation bowl square

The art of making a difference to the climate crisis

‘Artists are uniquely positioned to face what is happening to the climate, to reimagine the world and create a new narrative,’ says Sveinung Nygaard (Sven), a Norwegian composer and musician. He was i...

Darfuri refugee camp in eastern Chad – photo with kind permission on CORD UK

Governance of Land in the Sahel

How can we catalyse human security and building climate resilience through land restoration? Held on 2nd December 2020, this live webinar followed that of the 10th July 2020 on “Land and security in S...

Summer Academy 2020 Geneva fountain lake, credit: Leela Channer

Environmental peacebuilding must define our era

The theme of 2020’s Geneva Peace Week was ‘Rebuilding Trust after Disruption: pathways to reset international cooperation’. On 6 November, Initiatives of Change and the Geneva Centre for Security Poli...

Water Warriors, vegetable gardens

The language of water – the language of the heart

IofC’s Initiatives for Land, Lives and Peace (ILLP) programme works on the links between environmental regeneration and sustainable peace and security. In 2020, it helped to create Water Warriors, a c...

Irina Fedorenko CDES 2020 screenshot

Caux Dialogue on Environment and Security 2020

The Caux Dialogue on Environment and Security aimed high in its first online edition, with more than 15 sessions and a cumulative total of 450 participants. Experts discussed the connection between se...

Summer Academy 2020 screenshot participants cropped credit: Alan Channer

Summer Academy 2020: expansive possibilities for the future

The effusive feedback from participants in the five-day 2020 Summer Academy on Land, Climate and Security vindicated the difficult decision to take the course online. Four months ago, this had seemed ...

CDLS 2019 Chau Duncan

Retooling the wheel for regenerative investment

Chau Tang-Duncan, co-founder and chief operating officer of Earthbanc, has been coming to Caux regularly since 2010. It was there that she first embraced the role she could have in connecting people a...

Karina Cheah

Overcoming the challenges of online dialogue groups

I have never been to Caux. I had also never moderated a dialogue group before, in or outside of the Caux Forum. As I faced the prospect of co-facilitating an online dialogue group in the Caux Dialogue...

CDES teaser theme square

Land and Security in Sub-Saharan Africa: assessing the risks and seeking a response

As part of the Caux Forum Online 2020, Initiatives of Change Switzerland and the Human Security Division of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs organized a video-conference in French on ‘L...

Tony Rinaudo

Tony Rinaudo: For a better future in Niger

Why would an Australian farmer who moved to Africa in the 1980s be called ‘the forest-maker’? Tony Rinaudo, World Vision Australia's climate action advisor, told this year's Caux Dialogue on Environme...

Rebecca Freitag yellow raincoat , credit: Kristoffer Schwetje

Raising a voice for the future

Read our interview with Rebecca Freitag (28), the German UN Youth Delegate for Sustainable Development from 2017 to 2019, promoting her generation’s concerns about sustainability at the United Nations...

Visier Sanyu discussion Caux

The Healing Garden of Nagaland

Dr Visier Sanyü often sleeps in his tree house. It’s a feature of the 12-acre Healing Garden which he created in Medziphema, Northeast India. Sanyü, a retired professor of history and archaeology, lik...

Caux Palace view night

Climate and the economy in the post-COVID world

As pandemic-related lockdowns and travel restrictions slowly begin to ease and a return to normal life seems nearer at hand, we are at a critical juncture as to how we choose to act towards our enviro...