Dr. Ernita van Wyk is a senior professional officer (social-ecological systems) at ICLEI-Africa and ICLEI’s Cities Biodiversity Center: Urban Biodiversity Work stream. Her work is focused on mainstreaming nature-based benefits in urban environments through research and collaborative work with city authorities on urban planning and project implementation. Following initial training in ecology and conservation, Ernita developed an interest in how people organise their institutions and policies to value and interact with the natural environment. Of particular interest, and of relevance to this congress, is discovering appropriate ways in which urban nature can support social-ecological resilience in urban spaces in developing contexts as well as making a persuasive case for urban nature to city governments. The City of Dar es Salaam’s first LBSAP for Ilala Municipal Council illustrates the challenges and opportunities inherent in the urban nature mainstreaming process.
Senior Professional Officer of ICLEI