Realizing UN decade on ecosystem restoration through a nature-based approach: A case review of management of biological invasions in protected areas
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As the influx of different invasive species and their spread to new areas increases, there is a need for a rigorous and relevant scientific evidence-based control and restoration (EBCR) approaches to inform practical decisions and policymaking. While evidence-based decision is gaining popularity in science and policy, its potential for transformative change especially in the management of invasive plant species remains unexplored. Control and restoration of areas invaded by invasive plant species in natural and protected ecosystems require such decisions. Here, we provide a framework to guide how EBCR can contribute to transformative change and we argue that upscaling existing EBCR practices in areas invaded by invasive plant species (especially in protected areas (PAs)) requires coalitions of interdisciplinary science, public, private, and civil society actors with a common goal. Since actors’ roles and stakeholder interactions are dynamic, to achieve durable impacts, the upscaling process must continually engage and involve actors, while maintaining a balance of incentives among them. Social and cultural dimensions of local communities as well as their indigenous and local knowledge need to be incorporated. Pathways to upscaling EBCR may involve leveraging adaptive governance, integrating successful initiatives and lessons into public policy and practices, or reinforcing governance and management-led change with private efforts. We identify general lessons from (complex) PAs for successful upscaling of EBCR and illustrate the components of our framework through a novel application of a nature-based approach (NbA) in PAs invaded by invasive plant species.