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In this webpage you will find Links to the UNESCO material entitled "Education for Sustainable Development in Biospheres Reserves and other Designated Areas: A Resource Book for Educators in South-Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean" that has been developed in 2012 as a training material for ESD experts and trainers.


The training material is addressed to trainers, officers of MAB Biosphere Reserves (BRs), Protected Areas (PAs), Environment Centres, Nature Parks, Eco-museums, NGOs, etc. within any “Designated Area” in SE Europe and the Mediterranean. Eventually, it can be used by all those involved in implementing awareness raising programs in the field, whether from formal or non formal education.


The current material attempts to make a meaningful and substantial link between the educational process that is taking place in Biosphere Reserves and other protected or designated areas, and their "protection" as such, using as a vehicle "Education for Sustainable Development" (ESD). 
ESD is an innovative type of education as it incorporates the economical, societal and environmental aspects of sustainability, challenging the current economic development trends that are applied worldwide, and that have led on one hand, to the global economic crisis, and on the other hand, to complex global environmental problems, such as resource depletion, climate change, biodiversity loss, etc. Addressing issues with this interdisciplinary, holistic approach is a key principle of the current training material.


As we approach the end of the "UN Decade for Education for Sustainable Development" (DESD 2005-2014), UN reports state that despite the positive steps and ESD initiatives taken by many countries, a major challenge remains, that is the capacities of ESD teachers and trainers. This will be one of the post 2014 challenges, as UNESCO will lead the follow up of the Decade in order to integrate sustainable development more actively into education.  
In this respect, this training material aims to build the capacities of the target group (trainers, environmental managers, NGOs' and relevant Ministries staff etc.) on how to use the MAB BRs and other designated areas in SE Europe and the Mediterranean, as learning and demonstration sites to apply holistic ESD programmes.


Biosphere Reserves (BRs) are sites recognized under UNESCO's MAB Programme which should innovate and demonstrate approaches to conservation and sustainable development. On the other hand, in the countries around the Mediterranean basin various types of designated areas or specially protected areas exist, bearing a national or international status. These areas are considered ideal for the development of innovative ESD programmes for students, young people, independent visitors or families and other audiences.


This training material has been created by the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE / MEdIES Secretariat), originally in Greek language targeting Greek audiences (2008). 
Since then it has been
- repeatedly reviewed by experts (2008, 2010 and 2011),
- amended and enriched so as to include Mediterranean case studies (2009),
- pilot tested and evaluated by a team of field-experts (2010)
- officially adopted by the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy) (2011)
- finalized and published (2012)

E – learning couses

After the official launching of the publication MIO-ECSDE through its MEdIES Secretariat develops e-learning courses on selected chapters of the book. 

The current project is being financed by:

MIO-ESCDE through the
CORE funding programme of EU DG ENV

UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy)