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- Social-ecological analysis of climate induced changes in biodiversity – outline of a research concept (2011)
- The interactions of changes in climate and biodiversity with societal actions, structures and processes are a priority topic within the international scientific debate – and thus, a relevant subject matter for BiKF’s work. This paper outlines a concept for transdisciplinary research within BiKF. It focuses on the analysis of social-ecological systems supporting society with biodiversity driven ecosystem services. Such research is considering different issues: defining sustainable societal adaptations to climate induced biodiversity changes; permitting adequate understanding of the social-ecological reproduction of ecosystem functions, including their conservation and restoration; analysing the societal values and socio-economic utilisation of ecosystem services. Gaining knowledge in these areas provides an improved basis for decision-making in biodiversity and resource management.
- Transdisciplinary research on biodiversity : steps towards integrated biodiversity research (2012)
- The workshop “Transdisciplinary Research on Biodiversity, Steps towards Integrated Biodiversity Research” was organized on 14-15 November 2011 in Brussels by the German-based Institute for Social-Ecological Research (ISOE) in cooperation with the European Platform for Biodiversity Research Strategy (EPBRS) and the Belgian Biodiversity Platform. The workshop was a follow up of the EPBRS summit “Positive Visions for Biodiversity” organized in November 2010, and its aim was to explore ways to further increase the capacities of transdisciplinary biodiversity research in Europe. It brought together researchers and experts, representatives and decision-makers from European institutions and research funding agencies, as well as members from civil society and the private sector. Participants discussed and identified in working groups key research topics and the added value of transdisciplinary approaches for three main themes of the “Positive Visions for Biodiversity” summit: 1/ The integration of biodiversity into every part of life 2/ Values and behaviours to a more harmonious way of life 3/ Governance that is more transparent and effective and that balances global and local responsibilities. During the final plenary panel discussion, participants highlighted recommendations for promoting transdisciplinary biodiversity research: ➢ Scientists have a role to play in raising awareness on the importance of biodiversity as a transdisciplinary issue. ➢ Environmental policy representatives at national and European level have to open up to and interact with other sectors to better advocate for global biodiversity agreements and mobilize more funding for transdisciplinary research on biodiversity. ➢ There is a need for scientists who are interested in comunicating and advocating. The biodiversity community needs people who are able to bridge between worlds, both science and advocacy, to get transdisciplinary biodiversity topics on European research agendas. ➢ Scientific academic training should provide means and opportunities to train these new professionals to become the “in-between” links. Current educational and insitutional frameworks need to be adapted to provide such training and career opportunities. ➢ Innovation should be understood in a broader sense than technology and products with market value. Research is needed on innovative ways to increase sustainable use, recycling of natural resources and learning from natural processes. ➢ The biodiversity community needs to reinforce its identity and build up larger influential groups to be able to advocate more efficiently at national and European levels. Among the main barriers to developing and implementing an efficient transdisciplinary research on biodiversity issues, the current trends in European research agendas to focus on technological and product oriented research is particularly detrimental. Improving advocacy on biodiversity and the implementation of transdisciplinary biodiversity research will be critical for the next decade to ensure the necessary knowledge for informing political decisions.