Useful Links

Category 1 – other networks, collaborative projects and alliances working on dryland issues

African Drought Risk and Development Network

A regional networking facility for issues related to drought risk in development to stimulate and support strategies and initiatives to address drought risk in Africa.

Agricultural Innovation in Dryland Africa (AIDA) Project

The AIDA project will deliver a comprehensive and critical assessment of initiatives for rural development in dryland Africa to identify key drivers for success or critical analyses of failed interventions and to share this knowledge with all stakeholders involved.

Arid Lands Information Network

ALIN membership consist of over 2000 grassroots Community Development Workers drawn from NGOs, community- based organisations as well as government departments, all offering a form of extension service in their fields of expertise, related to arid lands.


The Brazilian ‘Articulação no Semi-Árido Brasileiro’ (ASA) is a forum for CSOs working in the semi-arid area of Brazil.


A European network of interdisciplinary groups of scientists, active in basic and applied research on land degradation/desertification, directly related to poverty alleviation.


The DESIRE project brings together 28 research institutes and NGOs from around the world in order to come up with alternative strategies for the use and protection of fragile arid and semi-arid ecosystems.

eniD – European Networking Initiative on Desertification

This European working group is dedicated to the implementation of the UNCCD in general and to the participatory approach of the Convention in particular. page=1_2&projectId=20

WOCAT database

WOCAT is a tool for documenting and evaluating Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) activities. A set of three comprehensive questionnaires and a database system have been developed to document all relevant aspects of SWC technologies and approaches, through which the reader can browse for appropriate and inspiring ways to tackle land degradation and desertification.

The International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED)

As an independent international research organisation, IIED are specialists in linking local to global. In Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Central and South America, the Middle East and the Pacific, IIED works with some of the world’s most vulnerable people to ensure they have a say in the policy arenas that most closely affect them — from village councils to international conventions.

The Man Who Stopped the Desert

"The Man Who Stopped the Desert", a documentary film about desertification and re-greening in the Sahel region.

African Re-greening Initiatives

A blog about re-greening by Chris Reij from the Centre for International Cooperation.

Category 2: linkages to UN-related dryland resources

FAO and Desertification

All information on the activities on desertification of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.

Global Mechanism (GM)

The GM provides advisory services to the country Parties to the UNCCD. The GM is defined as an organizational entity mandated "to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of existing financial mechanisms…[and]…to promote actions leading to the mobilization and channelling of substantial financial resources to affected developing country Parties". The GM also manages the FIELD database, a dynamic knowledge management system for searching, sharing and harnessing information related to sustainable land management financing.

UNCCD – United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

The official site of the UNCCD with fact sheets, newsletters, a simplified guide to the Convention, a calendar of events, all official documents and much more.

UNDP Drylands Development Centre

The Drylands Development Centre of the UN Development Programme specializes in assisting countries to fight poverty and encourage development in the drier parts of the world. The Centre specializes in assisting countries to fight poverty and encourage development in the drier parts of the world.


The activities and programmes of the UN Environment Programme linked to land use and desertification can be found here.

UNESCO MAB Drylands Program

The MAB drylands programme notably promotes: on-site dryland field studies; sharing of scientific expertise among dryland and desertification-affected countries; conservation of dryland ecosystems using the biosphere reserve approach; and education and capacity-building.

Category 3: linkages to general drylands resources

GEF – Land Degradation

An independent financial organization, the Global Environment Facility provides grants to developing countries for projects that benefit the global environment and promote sustainable livelihoods in local communities. They have a window on Land Degradation.

IFAD – Rural Poverty Portal

Powered by IFAD, the Rural Poverty Portal is a website where rural poor people, policy-makers, donors, research institutes, non-governmental organizations and other development partners can share information about eradicating rural poverty. Desertification is one of the dimensions on the portal on which you can find a lot of information there.

IISD Reporting Services – Linkages

Bringing you the latest news, information and analysis from international environment and sustainable development negotiations. This link is for upcoming meetings related to forests, deserts and land, as well as coverage of meetings held.

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment

The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment assessed the consequences of ecosystem change for human well-being. There is a full chapter on Dryland Systems and a Desertification synthesis.


Oasis is a global Challenge Programme, a CGIAR-catalyzed mechanism that engages its Centers in strategic partnerships with leading research-for-development organisations worldwide to tackle major global issues.

Category 4: linkages to organisations working in drylands

Drylands Research

Drylands Research is an informal consortium committed to understanding the linkages between policy strategies, long-term change, environmental management and rural livelihoods in semi-arid areas.


Check this page of the International Institute for Environment and Development for the Haramata, Bulletin of the drylands, for cutting-edge and action research, and for lots of resources related to pastoralism.


IUCN helps develop conservation science, manages field projects all over the world, and brings together players from different domains and sectors to develop and implement policy, laws and best practice. This link brings you to their work related to dryland ecosystems.


OSS is an independent international organisation based in Tunis, Tunisia. Their main objective is to give impetus to the combat against desertification and the mitigation of drought by providing member countries and organisations with a forum where they can share experiences and harmonise the ways in which data on early warning and monitoring systems for agriculture, food security and drought in Africa is collected and processed to feed into decision-support tools.

SOS Sahel UK

We seek long-term, sustainable solutions to the poverty experienced by millions of people across the semi-arid lands of the Sahel region of Africa. We want to see the people of the Sahel have more influence over the decisions that affect their lives and more control over the natural and economic resources they need for a secure and fulfilling life.

Category 5: Linkages to capacity building materials on lobby, advocacy, fundraising and project management

Both ENDS Service Desk

Both ENDS’ Service Desk offers support to civil society organisations in identifying relevant contacts, finding the right information and finding funding. It also offers support for activities and campaigns and mobilisation of allies. Materials include fundraising tools and donor information.

Convention on Biological Diversity

A Good Practice Guide. Pastoralism, Nature Conservation and Development. Montreal 2009

Learning from experience

A manual for organizing, analysing and documenting field based information.

Monitoring government policies – A toolkit for civil society organisations in Africa

This toolkit seeks to help partner organisations hold their governments to account for the consequences of their policies. Not only applicable in Africa!

The purpose of this site is to make resources available, free, to NGOs working in the development or humanitarian fields. We make or find manuals that can help NGOs build skills, and suggest other websites with good resources.

Provoking change – A toolkit for African NGOs

This Advocacy Toolkit was developed for local and national NGOs, but specifically for those based in West Africa. This toolkit was produced by FERN at the request of a network of environmental NGOs in West Africa: the Green Actors of West Africa (GAWA).

Seeds for Change

Seeds for Change Network is a non-profit training co-op helping people organise for action and positive social change. Seeds for Change offers some free briefings and resources on practical campaigning skills and working in groups.