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EU-China international cooperation on increasing the resilience of forests


Adaptation and increased resilience of forests is essential for the forests to maintain their function as carbon sinks, to protect existing stocks and to ensure that forests will continue to provide important ecosystem services and to support the forest-based bioeconomy. Due to the high variation of European and Chinese forests, diversity of landscapes as well as governance and ownership structures, adaptation strategies need to be adapted to regional conditions and circumstances, with focus on the most vulnerable forests in climate change hotspots.

Proposals will:

  • Develop and refine projections at regional scale, improve the modelling of effects on natural vegetation, both at individual and ecosystem level and support science-based decisions with a view to the sustainable management of forests, including activities related to afforestation, reforestation and regeneration.
  • Design adaptation plans to increase the resilience of forests by active management of the species composition and the genetic diversity within these species (including through assisted species migration, and forest regeneration and afforestation with species already adapted and / or further improved to tolerate or even benefit from future climate conditions) while supporting forest production and ecosystem services under climate change in the various regions and forest types of Europe.
  • Analyse socio-economic aspects of forest adaptation, including forest managers’ and users’ perception and factors influencing their decision making such as consumer choices, sectorial integration and international/domestic competition and analyse the potential of incentives and tools to reach forest managers and to encourage changes towards preventive strategies/measures by taking into account the different forms of forest governance and ownership.

The project must implement the multi-actor approach and ensure an adequate involvement of the primary production sector and the wider forest-based value chain.

In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement.

Proposals should include a task to collaborate with projects financed under the topic HORIZON-CL6-2022-CLIMATE-01-05: Forestry: European observatory of climate change impacts and demonstration network of climate smart restoration pilots. Actions will contribute to implementing the EU-China Food, Agriculture and Biotechnology (FAB) flagship initiative, which aims to ensure sustainability of agri-food systems, catering for the needs of a growing population, the reduction of food and agricultural losses and waste, and the provision of safe and healthy foodstuffs.

Due to the scope of this topic, international cooperation is strongly encouraged, in particular with China. This topic is envisaged to be implemented as a coordinated call but if no agreement is reached with the Ministry of Science and Technology China (MOST) on the co-funding of Chinese partners, it will be implemented as a normal call. Updates will be published on the Funding & Tenders Portal.

This topic should involve the effective contribution of SSH disciplines.