The environment-culture-technology nexus framework: an approach for assessing the challenges and opportunities for implementing nature-based in Brazil

Fabiano Lemes de Oliveira*, Maria do Carmo de Lima Bezerra, Tarek Teba, Aline da Nóbrega Oliveira

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Nature-based solutions have been theorised and put in practice across the world as actions based or derived from nature aimed at helping tackle a range of urban challenges across the domains of sustainability. The need to relate global and local challenges is crucial for the successful development and implementation of such strategies. Yet, the imbalance between the attention given to content derived from the Global North compared to other parts of the world suggests a need for further consideration of contexts elsewhere. This chapter presents a framework for the identification of challenges, and the planning and implementation of nature-based solutions considering the complexities of cities in the developing world, in particular Brazil. It focuses on the interactions between environmental, socio-cultural and technological aspects of location, both in terms of their challenges and pathways for NBS implementation. In its first part, the chapter presents the definition of the framework, followed by the application of this framework to two case studies in the Federal District, Brazil is presented in the second section. The chapter demonstrated the importance of developing locally and socially rooted solutions in line with promoting the citizen knowledge as a response to predominant land occupation and unequal urbanization in cities, which in turn results in imbalance in ecosystems. This highlights the significant rule environmental education can play in raising awareness regarding the interaction between city and nature and how to promote equity in the distribution of the values of ecosystem services arising from the use of NBS. The chapter concluded that a new culture of thinking is needed to revise urban patterns and traditional urban occupations as important factors for the production of ecosystem services associated with water management. It insists on expanding the use of digital technologies and tools that equip local governments with the ability to build better urban and management scenarios and develop effective data acquisition, processing, and modelling in order to improve evidence-based planning. The outcomes of this chapter help in facing the challenges of adopting NBS in similar contexts in the Global South based on evidence from the Brazilian case study.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNature-based Solutions for Sustainable Urban Planning - Greening Cities, Shaping Cities
EditorsIsraa H. Mahmoud, Eugenio Morello, Fabiano Lemes de Oliveria, Davide Geneletti
Number of pages34
ISBN (Electronic)9783030895259
ISBN (Print)9783030895242
Publication statusPublished - 5 Mar 2022

Publication series

NameContemporary Urban Design Thinking
ISSN (Print)2522-8404
ISSN (Electronic)2522-8412


  • nature-based solutions
  • Brazil
  • framework
  • water
  • urban planning
  • GIS


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