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Inventory of marine biodiversity research projects

An inventory of marine biodiversity research projects being carried out by scientists from the European Union and European Economic Area (EEA) has recently been published. The inventory is based on the results of a workshop, sponsored by the European Community's specific RTD p...
An inventory of marine biodiversity research projects being carried out by scientists from the European Union and European Economic Area (EEA) has recently been published. The inventory is based on the results of a workshop, sponsored by the European Community's specific RTD programme in the field of Marine Science and Technology (MAST), held in Plymouth in March 1996.

The inventory includes details of some 610 projects currently under way, with the majority being carried out in Europe. The inventory shows that projects are being undertaken throughout European sea areas. The projects are classified according to the five elements of the international Diversitas programme:

- Effects of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning;
- Origins, maintenance and change of biodiversity;
- Systematics, cataloguing and classification of biodiversity;
- Monitoring of biodiversity;
- Conservation, restoration and sustainable use of biodiversity.

Although there are an impressive number of projects under way, the inventory shows that research in this area is suffering from an extremely fragmented approach. There is no mechanism to coordinate the areas where research is carried out, either geographically or scientifically.

The book makes a number of recommendations for better coordination of research efforts in the future, including the development of a European science plan in the field. It suggests using the global Diversitas programme as a starting point for the European effort.

Source: European Commission, DG XII
DE FR

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