Integrated Natural Resource Management (INRM) Activity

The Integrated Natural Resource Management (INRM) activity provides demand-driven support services and technical assistance for USAID Missions and Operating Units across a wide array of environmental and natural resource management issues.


Sound governance and management of natural resources are central to long-term, sustainable development and resilience. As the world is faced with growing threats to the environment and human well-being, solutions that effectively integrate investments in natural resource management with economic and social development are increasingly urgent. INRM promotes integrated programming across environment and non-environment sectors and across the USAID Program Cycle. INRM supports USAID to amplify program impacts, strengthen gender equality and social inclusion, and identify best practices for integration.


Providing extra technical bandwidth

Integrated programming requires a range of technical expertise across multiple sectors—as well as time and effort to implement. USAID Missions and Operating Units may need extra bandwidth to assess integration opportunities and put them into action. INRM brings a team of cross-sectoral experts to help identify programmatic needs and support research and analysis that can inform sound decision-making.

Example activities:

  • Gender Equality Needs Assessment for the Bureau for Resilience and Food Security
  • Crosswalk Analysis for the USAID Policy on Promoting the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (PRO-IP) and USAID Private Sector Engagement Policy 
  • USAID 2015 Biodiversity Policy Assessment

Putting knowledge and evidence to work

USAID staff need relevant and credible evidence to inform decisions throughout the Program Cycle. However, the available evidence may be weak or contradictory, and tools and resources may be hard to find. INRM synthesizes research, reports, and other evidence that can be applied at different stages of the Program Cycle to help strengthen and amplify development outcomes.

Example activities:

Measuring cross-sector benefits 

Cross-sectoral programming assumes that integrated approaches will generate a broad range of benefits and improve outcomes. Yet, measuring integration can be complex. INRM assists in designing and implementing integrated monitoring, evaluation, and learning to help understand when and how integrated programming is the best approach.

Example activities:

What INRM Offers

Analysis, Synthesis, and development of an evidence base

USAID has long recognized that evidence-informed decisions are essential for efficient and effective development programs. In the face of multiple knowledge gaps and a rapidly increasing number of information and data sources, evidence-based practice becomes particularly salient. INRM supports USAID’s efforts to use, generate, share, and apply evidence both to inform programming decisions and to advance global development practice.

Here are some of the evidence services INRM can provide:

  • Research and learning agendas
  • Tailored evidence syntheses
  • Multidisciplinary research activities
  • Analyses to support evidence-informed programming
  • Targeted CKM for evidence findings
Integrated monitoring, evaluation, and learning (iMEL)

Across USAID’s portfolio, there are numerous opportunities to test the value proposition of integrated programming and demonstrate the impacts of single-sector interventions to multiple development outcomes. However, MEL for activities that include multiple development goals presents distinct challenges and requires tailored technical approaches. INRM provides technical assistance by developing iMEL frameworks, supporting implementation of monitoring programs in multi-sectoral projects or activities, and conducting evaluations of integrated programs.

Here are some of the integrated MEL services INRM can provide:

  • Impact evaluations
  • Performance evaluations
  • Baseline surveys
  • Custom indicators 
Convening, facilitation, and stakeholder engagement

Effectively integrating multiple interests and perspectives is at the core of all successful development programs. However, development investments that span multiple sectors often require developing trust, shared languages, and mutually agreed approaches and metrics. INRM can support multi-stakeholder interactions and exchanges in a variety of fora, leading to better-integrated program design and implementation.

Here are some of the services INRM can provide:

  • Webinar design, convening, and delivery
  • High-level knowledge exchanges
  • Integrating GESI considerations in stakeholder engagement
Communications and knowledge management

USAID generates volumes of high-quality evidence, guidance, and development resources every year. Ensuring that this great work reaches the right audiences and delivers value requires a deep understanding of the target audience and its members’ needs. INRM supports USAID with strategic communications and knowledge management (CKM) that helps amplify USAID’s important work and outcomes.

Here are some of the CKM services INRM can provide:

  • Strategy development
  • Human-centered design
  • Collaborative content development and curation 
  • Outreach and dissemination

Janet Nackoney
Land and Resource Governance Division, Center for Natural Environment,
Bureau for Resilience, Environment and Food Security (REFS)

Olaf Zerbock
Biodiversity Division, Center for Natural Environment,
Bureau for Resilience, Environment and Food Security (REFS)

Robin Martino

For more information about how to access INRM’s technical services, please download an info sheet about the new Mission-support mechanism here:  INRM Factsheet.

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Reducing Threats to Biodiversity Through Integration

Integrated Natural Resource Management Digest: December 2023 – January 2024 While there has been much progress in overall economic prosperity around the world, the loss of biodiversity continues at an unprecedented rate. Growing environmental challenges, like biodiversity loss and climate change, have negative impacts on the natural systems that sustain global development. To address these...Read More

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