PEGASUS Newsletter - May 2016
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This is the first newsletter of the PEGASUS project, where you can:
  • Find out what PEGASUS is all about;
  • Read about the latest developments of the project;
  • Hear about our emerging findings.

What is PEGASUS?
PEGASUS (Public Ecosystem Goods And Services from agriculture and forestry: Unlocking the Synergies) aims to transform approaches to rural land management by unlocking the synergies between economic, social and environmental benefits provided by agriculture and forestry. This EC-funded Horizon 2020 project is investigating new ways of thinking about the way farms and forests are managed. The PEGASUS team hopes to stimulate long-lasting improvements in the delivery of social, economic and environmental benefits from EU agriculture and forestry by identifying useful changes for policy and in practice.

The project is investigating 34 case studies in 10 Member States, covering different farming and forest systems and supply chains, to gain a detailed understanding of the scope for improvement in a wide variety of situations. We will be looking at a range of policy and market drivers that encourage or hinder the provision of ‘environmentally and Socially Beneficial Outcomes (ESBOs) on the ground, alongside commercial farming and forestry.

With the involvement of a wide range of stakeholders – land managers, rural stakeholders, policy-makers, etc. - PEGASUS will raise awareness about the importance and feasibility of integrating ESBOs within their business decisions (e.g. in land management decisions); will develop practical tools to enable farmers, foresters and other stakeholders to take action to manage these activities more sustainably in the long term; and will develop policy recommendations on new options for policy design to support and guide regional, national and European decisions relating to the sustainable use of agriculture and forestry land.

The PEGASUS team
PEGASUS brings together a multidisciplinary team of 14 partners from 10 EU countries, including universities, policy institutes and NGOs and spanning natural and social sciences, economics and policy. The project is coordinated by IEEP, the Institute for European Environmental Policy.

  • Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), UK – Project Coordinator
  • University of Gloucestershire, Countryside and community research institute (CCRI) UK
  • DLO Foundation, comprising: Agriculture and Economics Research Institute (LEI) and Alterra, the Netherlands
  • Institute for Rural Development Research (IfLS), Germany
  • Public Research Agency on Agriculture and Agricultural Economics (CRA-INEA), Italy
  • Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information (IAEI/UZEI), Czech republic
  • Joint Research Centre (JRC), Italy
  • National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA), France
  • Federal Institute for Less-Favoured and Mountainous Areas (BABF), Austria
  • Evora University (Evora), Portugal
  • Ljubljana University (LJ), Slovenia
  • Centre for Ecological Engineering (CEET), Estonia
  • BirdLife Europe (BirldLife), EU level
  • Euromontana: European Association of Mountain Areas (EM), EU level
For more information on the different partners, please visit our PEGASUS website.

The PEGASUS project is a 3-year project and started in March 2015. The final results are expected in early 2018. The project has been timed so that its findings and recommendations can inform a number of key policy processes such as the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) but also feed into national and regional agricultural and forestry policies.

Read about what has been done so far
For this first issue of the PEGASUS newsletter, we explain how we have developed the analytical framework for the project, taking a multi-disciplinary approach to applying existing theories and concepts. You can read more about this in the article Introducing the social-ecological system framework: a review of public goods and ecosystem services theories and concepts by Anne Maréchal, Janet Dwyer and Kaley Hart (CCRI and IEEP). 

The framework has been informed and will continue to be complemented by findings from the mapping work which you can read about it in the article Mapping and assessment of Public Goods and Ecosystem Services provision in relation to the diversity of EU farming and forestry systems in the EU.

Analysis is also currently under way in ten countries to identify and understand the relationships between key groups of socio-political, economic and institutional factors considered crucial for influencing the levels of provision and appreciation of environmental and social benefits in different EU contexts. Read more about this in the article Market, institutional and socio-economic drivers that support and inhibit the provision of environmental and social benefits from EU agriculture and forestry.

The analytical framework is being used and tested in the ongoing analysis in our 34 case studies across the EU which you can read more about in the article Exploring innovative and participatory approaches for ESBO (Environmentally and Socially Beneficial Outcomes) delivery by Karlheinz Knickel (IfLS).

Next steps for PEGASUS 
PEGASUS will organise a workshop in Estonia (WP4) from 27 - 29 June 2016 to share the findings from the 34 case studies and to prepare a discussion paper. Further analysis in the 10 in depth case studies will take place in the second half of 2016.

During 2017, the focus of our work will turn to using the findings from the case studies, the mapping and the drivers analysis to develop both practical tools for making sustainable decisions for land management as well as drawing policy lessons and developing policy recommendations. These will consider the implications of our findings for land management policy and practice in diverse farming and forest situations in the EU Concrete suggestions for improvements for the CAP and forestry policy will be developed.

During 2017, the PEGASUS project will organise a series of road-shows and conferences to test the results and refine our analysis and recommendations. A first suite of road-shows on the results of the in-depth case studies will take place early 2017.

More information will be sent in our next PEGASUS newsletter, scheduled for October 2016.

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