The Wyss Academy for Nature is motivated by the urgent need to overcome the silos of research, policy and practice, to identify and implement local solutions to current global challenges. With the ramp-up phase coming to an end, we have set up a strategy and a detailed plan for our activities. The strategy for 2022 to 2024 foresees three overall strategic goals. Each goal translates into key objectives which guide our concrete projects and activities that generate results over the next few years.
Nature and human well-being – benefits for both
We are convinced that the conservation of nature must go hand in hand with improving the lives of human beings. We want to prototype solutions that change the vicious circles we encounter in the various fields we work in – which lead to ever increasing environmental and social degradation – into regenerative, virtuous circles.
Our first strategic goal is to find solutions to conflicts between nature and people within twelve different landscapes around the world. We will co-design pathways for the transformation of systems – such as food and energy – by promoting innovations that in turn enable recommendations to be made for other environments and at a global level.
Monitoring and evaluation of progress and failures will ensure that we constantly learn and adapt. Lessons will be shared among our Regional Hubs and across scales.
Inspiring a new social contract with nature
Our second strategic goal is to inspire a new social contract with nature throughout society, the economy and politics, be it on the local, national or global level.
This would mean that people and organizations from all parts of society increasingly understand that reconfiguring our relationship with nature is a necessary survival strategy for humanity – and that we need to act now.
Our aim is to engage people from society, business, and politics in a science-based dialogue to establish a shared understanding of challenges and a common vision for the future. On that basis, we want to establish strategic alliances for systems change, share and scale-up available solutions and pathways, and influence policy.
Global enabler of innovations
Our third strategic goal is to establish the Wyss Academy as a global enabler of innovations that will help transform the relationship between people and nature – within systems such as food, energy, the economy or urbanization – in order to attain a world that is more just and more sustainable.
We believe that innovative solutions also require new and innovative organisations. The Wyss Academy not only has the opportunity to establish Regional Hubs, transdisciplinary research & innovation teams, and policy platforms under the roof of a single organization. It is also unique that we encourage these units to collaborate directly in new ways, creating added value. We want everyone to work productively and with joy in an adaptive and entrepreneurial spirit focused on innovation and learning. Sharing our discoveries, knowledge and practical expertise with all our stakeholders, we are creating a culture of innovation across boundaries.
Our aims here are to build trusted partnerships, to become a key reference for sustainability science, to be a role model in how we organize ourselves and implement innovation and to build on people and culture.
These strategic goals are essential to fulfilling our mission. They are closely interconnected and all equally important. Their implementation will be ensured through joint work streams of the Wyss Academy for Nature for each of our 12 objectives. They will become important vehicles for collaboration in self-managed and adaptive teams that bridge across the current business units, connect to external partners and include different cultures. The insights they will gain will be of value across the world and can be applied to new processes in other situations and locations with similar challenges.