Culture and nature

Biosphere Reserves

UNESCO biosphere reserves are model regions for sustainable development. They successfully balance the interests of the livelihoods of people with those of nature conservation, building on local participation and a knowledge-based approach.

701 UNESCO Biosphere Reserves currently exist in 124 countries, 16 of them in Germany. In Europe in particular, these are often traditional cultural landscapes with a high degree of biological diversity shaped by human activity. They create opportunities for long-term processes of sustainable development and maintain landscapes viable for decent life in healthy nature.

Biosphere Reserves promote, for example, the marketing of organic food, seek solutions in land-use conflicts and strengthen education for sustainable development. They represent a quality mark for tourism, create income- and job-generating opportunities and also strenghten identities as part of a global network.

The German Commission for UNESCO strengthens Biosphere Reserves in Germany and worldwide by supporting political processes and innovative projects. More about our work...