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Global Land Outlook

The Global Land Outlook (GLO) is a strategic communications platform and publication that demonstrates the central importance of land quality to human well-being, assesses current trends in land conversion, degradation and loss, identifies the driving factors and analyzes the impacts, provides scenarios for future challenges and opportunities, and presents a new and transformative vision for land management policy, planning and practice at global and national scales.

The premise is that land, and its associated resources, comprise a stock of natural capital. The increasing demand for land-based goods and services, and the manner in which they are today produced is adversely impacting the health and future productivity of the planet.

The misuse and over-exploitation of land resources are threatening human security on multiple fronts: diminishing food and water security as well as reduced soil health and ecosystem resilience make us more vulnerable to extreme weather events and the impacts of climate change, and even threaten stability and security within and between nations.

The GLO presents an overview of the status of land and a clear set of responses to optimize land use, management, and planning, and thereby create synergies among sectors in the provision of land-based goods and services. This integrated approach is the basis of the conceptual framework for land degradation neutrality (LDN), a target which is seen as the driving vehicle for the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and an important part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The GLO first edition

One of the UNCCD’s main aims is to help countries overcome the barriers to the adoption and scaling up of sustainable land management (SLM) policies and practices needed to reduce poverty, and increase food, water, and energy security for all. The first edition of the GLO supports the mandate of the UNCCD secretariat to continually seek innovative approaches and products that increase awareness of desertification, land degradation, and drought while advocating for proven and cost-effective solutions to advance numerous targets contained in the Sustainable Development Goals.

GLO themes


The GLO is presented in such a manner as to be accessible to civil society and decision-makers in both the private and public sectors. It is part of a broader effort to facilitate discussion on land use policy and practice by illustrating the fundamental importance of good land management.

Part One of the Outlook takes a broad brush in painting the big picture, while Part Two discusses some of the most pressing global issues that impact land use, demand, and condition as well as the responses needed to achieve the target of land degradation neutrality (LDN), and the related objectives of poverty reduction, food and water security, biodiversity and soil conservation, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and sustainable livelihoods. Part Three highlights six response pathways that producers and consumers, governments and corporations can follow to stabilize and reduce pressure on land resources as well as illustrative case studies and key tools to help achieve success.

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