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Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

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About the conference

About the conference

From science to practice, what can be learned from interdisciplinary research in relation to future ecosystem services of Mediterranean forests?

Mediterranean forests hold an important biodiversity and provide multiple goods and services for multiple users at local and global level: timber, cork, fuelwood or forage provision, carbon sequestration, water cycle regulation and  protection against soil erosion, as well as various recreational and cultural services. Human societies have for centuries adapted these social-ecological systems to constrained climatic conditions and related risks (drought, fire, etc.). Most climate change scenarios predict a general expansion of such risks at larger scales. Thus, Mediterranean climate regions are a reservoir of forest resources and experience for adaptation to climate change. Advancing on the understanding of the resilience mechanisms of Mediterranean forest social-ecological systems is a general concern and also a potential relevant source of information for other biomes.

Climate change scenarios for the Mediterranean are particularly severe and climatic fluctuations have a high potential impact on long-lived organisms like trees in these constrained conditions. Considering the context of change, facing increased hazards and uncertainties, a new paradigm emerges where adaptation and long term preservation of options are both needed, following a more flexible approach to managing forests. In this new paradigm, biodiversity is not only considered as a reservoir of living forms with different hierarchical levels (individuals, populations, communities) but also as a set of processes that permanently puts the diversity in evolution. Mediterranean forests resilience results from the interplay between human decisions and actions and natural processes.

This conference will present the results of the inter-disciplinary research project INFORMED “INtegrated research on FOrest Resilience and Management in the mEDiterranean”, funded by the ERA-Net FORESTERRA. The project was conducted by an consortium of research groups combining expertise in life sciences, forestry sciences and socio-economics from 10 Mediterranean countries representing both the Northern and Southern Rim. Research in each disciplines were conducted in a series of case study sites, five of which were devoted to interdisciplinary integration, from ecology to economics, aiming to assess multiple ecosystem services under various climate change scenarios and forest policy orientations at three different time horizons. The project aimed to (1) produce global change scenarios specifically dedicated to the Mediterranean forests, (2) develop quantitative assessment of biodiversity and functional response of Mediterranean forests to disturbance and management, (3) develop integrated assessment of ecosystem services, their dynamics and trade-offs based on ecosystem functions and their economic evaluation, and (4) evaluate adaptive management strategies, policy and governanceoptions according to their expected impact on resilience of Mediterranean forests. Discussants will include members of the INFORMED consortium and invited speakers.