Poster presented at River Restoration Conference

The BiodiversityKnowledge poster "Conservation of biodiversity in floodplains: is multifunctionality the solution? " was presented at the 5th European River Restoration Conference from 11-13 Sep 2013, Vienna, Austria.


Conservation case paper presented at 6th ESP in Bali

Zita Sebesvari, an expert taking part in the BiodiversityKnowledge conservation case, presented the paper "Multifunctionality of floodplain management: a matrix relating interventions to ecosystem services" at the 6th Annual International Ecosystem Services Partnership (ESP) Conference, 26-30 Aug 2013, Bali, Indonesia.


Biodiversity and ecosystem services call for synthesis research proposals

UFZ together with the U.S. Socio-Environmental Synthesis Centre SESYNC and the German Synthesis Centre for Biodiversity Sciences sDiv are announcing an international opportunity for socio-environmental synthesis research on "Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services".

Funding is available for up to six collaborative synthesis projects that bring together data, ideas, theories, or models to address a critical socio-environmental question at the interface of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Within this interface, the subject matter of proposed projects is open. For example, proposed research could deal with the emergence or functional importance of ecosystem services, or the sustainable use and conservation of biodiversity as determinants for human well-being. Proposals are welcome from investigators whose home institutions are anywhere in the world—i.e., this call is not limited to U.S. or German investigators. Funding decisions will be based on external peer review by an international panel.

Funded synthesis teams are expected to spend time at each of the three centers (SESYNC in Annapolis, MD, USA; sDiv and UFZ in Leipzig, Germany) working on their projects. Each team should generally have no more than 5 members but may include up to 2 doctoral students to participate in team meetings. Each team will be asked to interact with the faculty and to give (at least) a seminar talk during their stays at the hosting centers. SESYNC, sDiv and UFZ will facilitate opportunities for graduate education and exchange with students and researchers who are working on biodiversity and ecosystem services at these institutions. Opportunities may also exist for doctoral students of the teams to attend a relevant graduate course offered by the graduate schools onsite.

Deadline for application is October 9, 2013.

More details

Marine Case Systematic Review Protocol published

The BiodiversityKnowledge Marine Test Case had published its Systematic Review Protocol in the journal Environmental Evidence.

Kelp forests are highly productive ecosystem engineers of rocky cold-water marine coastlines,providing shelter, habitat and food for a variety of associated organisms. Several factors have been related with an observed trend of kelp deforestation in some regions of the globe. The effect of this trend on fisheries has beenpoorly studied. The European directives addressing the conservation of marine habitats highlight the need toincrease the knowledge about the relationship between kelp forests and fisheries, which will also be very valuablefor the definition of fisheries management measures. This protocol describes the methods that will be used to conduct a systematic review to answer the following question: What is the impact of changes in kelp forest density and/or area on the abundance and diversity of fisheries?

Biodiversity Informatics Horizons 2013 3-6 September 2013, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy

Biodiversity Informatics Horizons 2013
3-6 September 2013, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy

Biodiversity is a global concern, but just how much do we know about it? Biodiversity Informatics Horizons 2013 (BIH2013)
is part of a continuing process that will help to structure and organise the information that we do have. It will maximise and focus our efforts to build the information resources, tools and infrastructure the scientists and policymakers need.

Sample of BIH2013 topics
Invited talks and interactive panel discussions will explore:
- Changing ecosystems; biodiversity modelling; ecology; biodiversity catalogues; phenomes and genomes; marine citizen science.
- Earth observation data; geo-temporal data; environmental and molecular data; linking data; long-term data preservation and interoperability.
- Collaborative platforms; future computing platforms; service networks; virtual labs and virtual research environments; workflows; multi-disciplinary interoperability.
- Marketplace of scientific communities; community-based sustainability models.
- EU environmental policy, international perspectives from Brazil, China, South Africa and the US.
There will be 5 parallel tracks over the 3 days: Scratchpads training; Pensoft writing tool (ViBRANT project); ENVRI tools for search and discovery; Bibliographies in a changing landscape; BioVeL Workflows; EUBrazilOpenBio Public Workshop and training session.
Conference takeaways
- Up-to-date knowledge of technical challenges facing the community.
- Inspiring ideas and consensus on how to sustain the work the community is doing.
- Raised awareness and greater commitment to coordinate across the community.
- A springboard to form and coordinate consortia to build bids for Horizon 2020 funding.
- Networking across the community and across borders.
Early Bird registration - ends 31 July 2013.

Views from conference experts: Biodiversity and informatics experts share their views on BIH2013.

Alex Hardisty, Cardiff University, UK: “The value of the event is in bringing together our community at a timely moment, to ensure that we are better coordinated when preparing and submitting proposals for new funding opportunities. It will lead to better overall coordination towards a community-wide vision of the informatics infrastructure needed to support research in the coming years”.

Dave Roberts, The Natural History Museum, UK: “Invited speakers will review challenging areas and promising technologies in biodiversity informatics and a panel discussion with experts from regions of the world beyond Europe will explore opportunities for international cooperation that lead towards a sustainable, global set of resources”.

Wouter Los, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands: “Biodiversity and ecosystems are the most complex systems we know. We see an encouraging number of initiatives addressing the challenges to understand the complexity of these systems. Their cooperation in the context of the LifeWatch community with attention for the required organisational, legal, financial and technical framework demonstrates that we are working perfectly together. BIH2013 conference provides a unique platform to consider our next steps and plans”.

Vanderlei Canhos, Reference Centre on Environmental Information (CRIA), Brazil: “The EUBrazilOpenBio Workshop at BIH2013 will bring together biodiversity stakeholders from Europe and around the globe, to discuss the integration and interoperability research infrastructures and identify potential future partnerships. The workshop will showcase the outcomes of the scoping analysis and its approach to support the integration of open access data, tools and services to biodiversity research communities”.