Continuing depletion of forest resources, particularly in tropical developing countries, has turned vast areas of intact ecosystems into urbanized and agricultural lands. The degree of degradation varies, but in most cases, the ecosystem functions and the ability to provide a variety of ecosystem services are severely impaired. In addition to many other challenges, successful forest restoration of these lands requires considerable resources and funding, but the ecological, economic and social benefits have the potential to outweigh the investment. As a consequence, at the international policy level, restoration is seen as a field of land use activities that provides significant contributions to simultaneously achieving different environmental and social policy objectives. Accordingly, different policy processes at the international policy level have made ecological landscape restoration a global priority, in particular the Convention on Biological Diversity with the Aichi Target 15 agreed upon in 2010, which aims at restoring 15% of all degraded land areas by 2020. While such ambitious policy targets are important for recognizing and agreeing upon solutions for environmental problems, they are unlikely to be further substantiated or governed. The objective of this paper is thus to develop a complementary governance approach to the top-down implementation of the Aichi target. Drawing on collaborative and network governance theories, we discuss the potential of a collaborative networked governance approach and perspectives for overcoming the inherent challenges facing a rapid large-scale restoration of degraded lands.