Scaling-up and sustainability of adaptation measures

Published: 17 September 2018
Last edited: 26 March 2021

Promoting EbA measures with a high level of community involvement and binational ties was an effective way to achieve greater interaction between community, municipal and national actors, and also between peers (network of resilient producers; local government encounter). The results are, on the one hand, greater local empowerment, and on the other, scaling-up of EbA measures both vertically and horizontally. Thus, contributions are made towards institutionalizing EbA and creating conditions for its sustainability. The replication of the integral farm model arose from networking between producers, communities and local governments, and from a regional project with the Binational Commission of the Sixaola River Basin (CBCRS) that provided the financing. The Agrobiodiversity Fair, the work of producers as a network, and the Binational Reforestation Events, which are now all under the auspices of local and national institutions, were important mobilizing forces of change and spaces for exchange and learning. In the vertical sense, the scaling-up of EbA included working with the CBCRS to integrate EbA in the Strategic Plan for Transboundary Territorial Development (2017-2021), and with MINAE in the National Climate Change Adaptation Policy of Costa Rica.


Alliance and partnership development
Co-management building
Communication, outreach and awareness building
Education, training and other capacity development activities
Evaluation, effectiveness measures and learning
Legal and policy frameworks, policy advocacy
Sustainable livelihoods
Scale of implementation
Phase of solution
Documentation and dissemination of results

Enabling factors

  • Much of the work was accomplished thanks to the channelling and guiding role of the CBCRS (created in 2009) as a binational platform for governance and dialogue, and the ACBTC as a local development association. Both advocate for local and territorial interests and know the gaps and needs that exist in the area, and with this project were able to address the challenges that communities face and improve governance in the basin, promoting an ecosystem approach and a broad participation of actors.

Lessons learned

  • Coordinating efforts through the CBCRS has shown that it is more cost-effective to work with existing structures and governance bodies, with powers and interests in the good management of natural resources and in achieving an appropriate representation of key actors, than to aim to create new groups or committees to deal with EbA issues.
  • Improving multilevel and multisectoral governance is a fundamental part of effective adaptation. Here, the role of subnational governments (such as municipalities) needs to be underscored, since they have a mandate in the management of the territory, but also responsibilities in the implementation of national adaptation policies and programs (e.g. NDCs and NAPs).
  • The identification of spokespersons and leaders (amongst men, women and youth) is an important factor in effectively fomenting the uptake and up-scaling of EbA.

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