Length Length

9 modules, accessible at any time

Effort Effort

1-2 hours per week

Price Price


Languages Languages


Video Transcripts Video Transcripts


Prerequisites Prerequisites


Requirements Requirements

An internet connection to access course materials

the role of


EbA case studies


social aspects


best practices




This course is self-paced – you enroll at any time and complete the course materials by August 31, 2024.

Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA); also known as nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation) is increasingly gaining policy support and being implemented by diverse actors around the world. EbA is defined as “the use of biodiversity and ecosystem services as part of an overall adaptation strategy to help people adapt to the adverse effects of climate change.” It involves the conservation, sustainable management, and restoration of ecosystems, thereby enhancing the resilience of ecosystems and communities to climate-related risks. EbA has broad applications across diverse sectors in fostering sustainable development and can help achieve multiple benefits for nature and human well-being.

While EbA guidebooks, case studies, and principles have contributed to standardising the EbA approach, there is a clear need for further training opportunities to strengthen EbA implementation across diverse sectors while ensuring that rights-based approaches, gender equity, and better outcomes for biodiversity and ecosystems are achieved.

This EbA course, developed for a global audience, will equip learners with transferable and replicable skills in designing and implementing EbA initiatives by offering targeted training on key principles, risk assessments, monitoring, and governance. A key aim of the course is to increase EbA knowledge outside of the environmental conservation community, helping participants integrate EbA solutions into other sectors—including infrastructure, water, agriculture, public works, and social development—to better link research and science with practice.

The EbA MOOC is the product of a collaboration between Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD). It builds on a decade of research, experience, and strong partnerships in implementing EbA.


  • Pre-recorded lectures
  • Readings
  • Activities
  • Quizzes 

This course is for

Professionals who may not be familiar with EbA but who work in a related field (development, infrastructure, agriculture, integrated water resources management)

Civil society organisations

Decision makers in public and private organisations

Actors at community, national, and global scales

Early-career EbA professionals, current students, and university faculty

EbA practitioners from both the Global North and Global South.


Course logistics and requirements

This course is self-paced. All course components are available now and can be completed at any time that is convenient for the students. Please note that this course is not facilitated by a course team. We encourage students to engage with one another via the discussion forum. Any specific questions can be sent to the SDG Academy team at courses@sdgacademy.org.


Certificate of Completion: All learners can earn a free Certificate of Completion, awarded by IISD, GIZ and IUCN, upon completing the course. If you would like to receive this Certificate, be sure to complete the post-course survey and follow the instructions carefully. If you would like to receive the certificate, be sure to complete the post-course survey and follow the instructions carefully. Please note that these certificates will be generated manually by the course team and sent to the email address you provide, therefore, you will not receive your certificate right away. Your patience is appreciated.


Module 1: Introduction to the Course

Module 2: What is EbA?

2.1 Common terms and concepts

2.2 What is EbA?

2.3 Elements of EbA

2.4 Situating EbA in sustainable development

2.5 Case Study: Restoring mangroves, Mexico

Module 3: The EbA Mainstreaming Framework

3.1 Mainstreaming an EbA project

3.2 Conceptualising an EbA project

3.3 Climate justice

3.4 Governance

3.5 Gender

3.6 Traditional Knowledge (TK) and Indigenous and local knowledge (ILK)

3.7 Communications

3.8 Case Study: Hariyo Ban Project, Nepal

Module 4: Assessing Climate Risks

4.1 Assessing climate risks

4.2 Climate change impact chains

4.3 Identifying and developing indicators

4.4 Identifying EbA options

4.5 Case Study: Flood risk assessment, Togo and Benin

Module 5: Case summaries of behaviour change in action

Chapter 1: Improving waste separation in hospital operating suites, using behavioural insights

Chapter 2: Protecting wetlands by changing cropping practices on private land, using behavioural insights

Chapter 3: Reducing food waste in schools, using behavioural insights

Chapter 4: Enhancing patient care in Victorian hospitals, using behavioural insights

Module 5: EbA Valuation

5.1 What is EbA valuation?

5.2 Why is EbA valuation important?

5.3 Valuation in the EbA Mainstreaming Framework

5.4 Prioritising EbA options

5.5 Case Study: Cost-benefit analysis, Vanuatu

Module 6: From Theory to Practice: Implementing EbA

6.1 Stakeholder analysis

6.2 Policy context review

6.3 EbA in action: Examples of EbA

6.4 Funding for EbA

6.5 Case Study: Land restoration, Inner Mongolia

Module 7: Tracking the Progress of EbA Implementation: Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning

7.1 What is monitoring and evaluation?

7.2 Developing a results framework

7.3 Identifying indicators, baselines, and targets

7.4 Operationalising monitoring and evaluation

7.5 Using and communicating results

7.6 Sustainability and scaling up EbA

7.7 Case Study: Monitoring and evaluation, South Africa

Module 8: Cross-cutting Inisghts

8.1 EbA and Governance

8.2 EbA and Gender

8.3 EbA and Traditional Knowledge (TK) and Indigenous and local knowledge (ILK)

8.4 EbA and Biodiversity

Module 9: Sectoral Insights

9.1 EbA and Agriculture

9.2 EbA and Water

9.3 Urban EbA