• The BWL Collective works towards restoring ecosystems...

  • Searching for Scalable Solutions

It has become evident that we are racing past planetary boundaries faster than anyone anticipated.

Based on the conversations with Ashoka Fellows working on the field of Planet & Climate, a fundamental need was pointed out: to rebalance humanity's relationship with nature. A crucial shift in paradigm is needed in understanding what nature is and how we see ourselves in relation to it.

We need to move from seeing humanity as separate from nature and instead, recognize the interconnectedness; that we are nature.

The main challenge therefore lays in how we can live well and prosper, alongside other species, while still operating within planetary limits. There is no uniform, or quick-fix solution, but it is certain that we must act now, together.  

This is why we have set up the Bioregional Weaving Labs Collective with 20 other system-changing organisations. Our approach is supported through the scalable concept of Bioregional Weaving Labs (BWL) that facilitate multi-stakeholder processes to engage local innovators, policymakers, corporates, and citizens. 

Before 2030, we aim to transform 1 million hectares of land and sea in Europe into healthy ecosystems, green economies, and thriving communities by establishing at least ten Bioregional Labs before 2025. The labs mobilise innovators and communities to take agency, and hence be part of the system change. 

Many of the communities and landscapes acknowledge the need to shift into a society that lives in balance with nature. Our Fellows and partners have proved the success of nature-based solutions that restore ecosystems, create green jobs, reduce greenhouse gases, and preserve biodiversity. Thus, the working solutions are out there, but the challenge lays in scaling and the speed in taking real, on-the-ground action. By weaving our knowledge, expertise, as well as networks and resources for Bioregional Weaving Labs, we can service the communities to co-create localised and most impactful solutions per region to achieve the desired transformation.  
Each bioregion has its local challenges within the landscape, as well as on community and policy level. We are able to provide bioregions with a range of international solutions from a comparable ecological region from areas that are facing or have faced the same socio-economical problems.This way, the local communities do not need to reinvent the wheel.  The success behind the solutions is that they are community-based and they empower people to take agency. Bioregional Weaving Labs have the potential to become flagship examples to show what is possible while inspiring other bioregions to start a journey of transformation.

Our collective: 1+1=3

All organisations in our collective are focusing on enduring systemic change while placing the communities at the very heart of what they do. Together, we have already established dozens of (bio)regional hubs, mobilised hundreds of active citizen groups and inspired millions of households, young people, farmers, policymakers, and corporates to change the way humans relate to nature. Many of these on-the-ground organisations are founded and led by Ashoka Fellows (15 in total) and are working in different focus areas on the front of Planet & Climate.By bringing together our complementary expertise, models, communities, and commitment to deep collaboration and continuous learning, we believe we can mobilise thousands of people in bioregions across Europe and beyond to create a brighter future for their bioregions, their communities, and the planet at large.

Read more about our solutions and what they can bring into a bioregion below.

Our solutions

Bioregional Weaving Lab facilitation

  • Ashoka is facilitating a global network of social entrepreneurs whose system-changing innovations solve deep-rooted social problems and initiating partnerships for collective impact.
  • Commonland is working on large scale, holistic landscape restoration through the 4Returns framework and facilitating multi-stakeholder partnership processes.
  • Presencing Insitute is an action research platform, co-creators of innovation labs, delivering capacity building and leadership programs based on an awareness based system change framework, Theory U.
  • Savory Institute is equipping land managers with innovative tools and curricula for holistic management of the land via the establishment of regional hubs.
  • Bioregional is providing a framework and a process for sustainable living that enables companies, communities, and city-regions to make sustainable living actionable and desirable.

Nature and biodiversity conservation

  • Hoge Kempen National Park (Belgium) is providing a (Re)Connection model for natural ecosystems, increasing socio-economic benefits through eco-tourism while protecting the environment.
  • Sea Ranger Service (The Netherlands, UK, Norway) is training unemployed youth to become Sea Rangers to protect the ocean and restore ocean biodiversity at scale.
  • Kogayon Association & Vacaresti Natural Park (Romania) is cultivating a citizen-driven functional conservation system for natural heritage and environmentally protected areas to ensure natural prosperity and sustainable development.
  • Klub Gaja (Poland, Iceland, UK) is engaging citizens to take practical actions for the natural environment and animal rights, like planting trees with the community or with schools 
  • Fundacja Laka (Poland) is facilitating the growth of biodiverse flower meadows in city centers, near roads, and on brownfields to preserve biodiversity.
  • Beeodiversity (Belgium, France, Luxembourg, France, Germany, UK, Bulgaria, Spain, Netherlands, Austria) is redefining the role of bees in our ecosystems through offering an innovative scientific monitoring tool using bees as drones to capture valuable data about the environment.

Food sovereignty and local food systems

  • Herenboeren (The Netherlands) is supporting families in developing self-owned nature-driven cooperative farms.
  • Incredible Edible (UK) is inspiring citizens to grow food in public spaces and share it across their communities to enhance active citizenship.
  • GIY (Ireland) is inspiring and enabling a global movement of people who grow their own food at home or in the community to reconnect with nature.

Holistic management and regenerative agriculture

  • Anatolian Grasslands (Turkey, Sweden) is enabling people and the institutions towards the "Age of Regeneration" by using Regenerative Agriculture as the main leverage and through holistic models, tools and hands-on implementation.
  • Savory Institute (UK, Germany, Spain, Turkey, Sweden) is equipping land managers with innovative tools and curricula for holistic management of the land via the establishment of regional hubs
  • Farming for Nature (Ireland) is recognising, supporting and rewarding farmers for enhancing the natural health of the countryside.
  • Vazapp (Italy) is providing farmers opportunity to exchange experiences, encourage cooperation and disseminate knowledge through organising cultural events.

Research and Impact measurement

  • Drawdown Europe is a Global Research program translating science into action by showing the potential of the most substantive climate solutions in a concrete region.
  • Beeodiversity (Belgium, France, Luxembourg, France, Germany, UK, Bulgaria, Spain, Netherlands, Austria) is redefining the role of bees in our ecosystem through offering an innovative scientific monitoring tool using bees as drones to capture valuable data about the environment.
Infographic about Weaving for a Thriving Planet solutions

Interested in journeying along?