Discover the World Network of Mountain Biosphere Reserves
Uniting mountain communities to conserve biodiversity, generate knowledge and promote sustainable development
What is the World Network of Mountain Biosphere Reserves?
Since the creation of the UNESCO MAB Programme in 1971, one of the main goals has been interdisciplinary research into mountains. The uniqueness of mountain ecosystems and the ecosystem services they provide have been the object of international studies whose interdisciplinary approach is reproduced across all areas of the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB).
During the 14th World Congress of Biosphere Reserves, which took place in 2016 in Lima, Peru, a proposal was made to create a thematic network of biosphere reserves located in mountain areas.
In December 2021 – the International Year of Sustainable Mountain Development – the UNESCO MAB Programme, along with the Mountain Research Initiative (MRI), launched the World Network of Mountain Biosphere Reserves.
The World Network of Mountain Biosphere Reserves aims to provide constant support to biosphere reserves through research, strategic partnerships and collaborations as well as North-South and South-South exchanges of experience. This approach will enable the WNMBR to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and climatic and biodiversity agreements, without leaving anyone behind.
The WNMBR is coordinated by the UNESCO Man and Biosphere Programme and a joint technical secretariat managed by the Research Centre for Eco-Environmental Sciences of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (China) and the Valles de Omaña y Luna Biosphere Reserve (Spain).
The goals of the WNMBR
Promote the application of scientific and local/Indigenous knowledge to improve management in mountain biosphere reserves
Give priority to research lines aligned with the goals of conservation and sustainable development of mountain biosphere reserves
Promote the exchange of knowledge and good practices among managers, scientists and other important members of mountain biosphere reserves
Technical secretariat of the WNMBR
‘The technical secretariat of the World Network of Mountain Biosphere Reserves is managed jointly by the Research Centre for Eco-Environmental Sciences of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (China) and the Valles de Omaña y Luna Biosphere Reserve (Spain), with THE support of the UNESCO MAB Programme Secretariat.
This governance model includes a scientific research centre and a biosphere reserve in order to provide the best of scientific and local knowledge for the conservation and sustainable development of biodiversity, boosting the capability of mountain biosphere reserves to serve as sustainability laboratories.’
There are 738 biosphere reserves in the world of which 474 are located in mountain areas.
Our projects depend on collaboration with other organizations
The WNMBR seeks to enhance collaboration among institutions and to facilitate logistical and financial support from the public and private sectors for research and management activities within mountain biosphere reserves.
Contact the WNMBR
If you have any questions or would like more information, send us a message and we will respond as soon as possible.
Do you want to join the WNMBR?
If you are a mountain biosphere reserve or a research centre with an interest in mountains, contact us for more information on how to join the WNMBR.