Drylands cover more than 41% of the world’s land surface and are home to some of the most unique biological and cultural diversity on the planet. They feature high levels of species endemism, comprise many unique ecosystems, and are home to some of the world’s most charismatic species and most treasured natural heritage. Some two and a half billion people – one third of the world’s population – live in drylands, 90% of them in developing countries. This has particular consequences for conservation of dryland biodiversity and for sustainable management of dryland resources.