Research project

An Integrated Framework for Sustainable Management of Natural Resources (SMNR)

Sustainability objectives for Wales are ambitiously defined through The Wellbeing of Future Generations Act (2015). This project is developing a framework to bring together environmental and socioeconomic components through co-ordinated long-term management of natural resources (water, air, soil, land, marine) and biodiversity.

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Start date

January 2023



Welsh Government 

The project involves an embedded research fellowship working with the Welsh Government, Natural Resources Wales and other stakeholders to identify current policy and regulatory frameworks for natural resources management and to produce a common framework that facilitates an integrated long-term approach to sustainability objectives. In addition to the main resource policy areas (water, air, soil, land, marine) it also involves integrating SMNR outcomes with the Global Biodiversity Framework targets for 2030 and with climate change objectives (Net Zero and the Adaptation Programme). A key requirement is to develop a co-ordinated approach to policy outcomes and indicators using a common structure and evidence-based strategies. This is being delivered through further development of the Ecosystem Approach to bring together the shared benefits of a healthy environment for human wellbeing, including through transformational initiatives to enhance resilience and regeneration. It includes both conventional outcomes and indicators together with further investigation and implementation of new evidence sources and datasets to advance the sustainability agenda. 


Project lead(s)

Dr Iain Brown

External team members

  • Caryl Williams (Welsh Government)
  • Julie Boswell (Natural Resource Wales)