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CAtastrophic Shifts in drylands: how CAn we prevent ecosystem DEgradation?

Objective

The aim of CASCADE is to obtain a better understanding of sudden ecosystem shifts that may lead to major losses in biodiversity and ecosystem services, and to define measures that can be used to prevent such shifts. The focus of CASCADE is explicitly on drylands as being one of the most fragile and threatened ecosystems in Europe. CASCADE will investigate the historical evolution of dryland ecosystems in six Mediterranean study sites, and improve understanding of the biogeochemical mechanisms underlying sudden and catastrophic shifts through a combination of experimentation and modeling. Experiments in laboratory and field will be used to assess the biogeochemical processes that are thought to underlie regime shifts in drylands, to study the interplay between competition and facilitation, and to assess the effects of biotic and abiotic processes on vegetation structure and composition. Field surveys will identify changes in ecosystem structure and functions that indicate approaching or crossing of tipping points, link these findings to experimental results, and assess potentials for restoration. Models will be developed to describe regime shifts in the studied drylands in terms of changes in vegetation composition, abundance and spatial patterning. Based on both experimentation and modelling, CASCADE will develop management schemes for sustainable resource use and conservation of ecosystem services. By combining physical with socio-economic modeling, measures will be defined that work from an ecological as well as a socio-economic perspective. The results of CASCADE will be made accessible to natural resource and biodiversity managers, policy makers, and other audiences, using a variety of dissemination methods such as reports, booklets, newsletters, meetings, videos, and TV. All project results and recommendations will be stored and made accessible to the public by developing a web-based harmonized CASCADE information system (CASCADIS).

Call for proposal

FP7-ENV-2011
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

CP-IP - Large-scale integrating project

Coordinator

WAGENINGEN UNIVERSITY
Address
Droevendaalsesteeg 4
6708 PB Wageningen
Netherlands
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 624 468,15
Administrative Contact
Coen J. Ritsema (Prof.)

Participants (14)

POLYTECHNEIO KRITIS
Greece
EU contribution
€ 465 000
Address
Building E4, Technical University Campus Counoupidiana
731 00 Chania
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Argyro Vaidaki (Ms.)
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DELLA BASILICATA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 374 880
Address
Via Nazario Sauro 85
85100 Potenza
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Giovanni Quaranta (Prof.)
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE CNRS
France
EU contribution
€ 387 480
Address
Rue Michel Ange 3
75794 Paris
Activity type
Other
Administrative Contact
Jocelyn Mere (Ms.)
UNIVERSIDAD DE ALICANTE
Spain
EU contribution
€ 465 000
Address
Campus De San Vicente Raspeig
03690 Alicante
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Carolina Fernández López (Ms.)
UNIVERSIDADE DE AVEIRO
Portugal
EU contribution
€ 374 760
Address
Campus Universitário De Santiago
3810-193 Aveiro
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Fernando Ferreira Batista (Mr.)
FONDAZIONE MEDES
Italy
EU contribution
€ 369 090
Address
Contrada San Licandro 1
84029 Sicignano Degli Alburni
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Rosanna Salvia (Dr.)
UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 207 364
Address
Woodhouse Lane
LS2 9JT Leeds
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Martin Hamilton (Mr.)
UNIVERSITAET BERN
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 387 448
Address
Hochschulstrasse 6
3012 Bern
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Hans Hurni (Prof.)
UNIVERSITEIT UTRECHT
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 294 045,90
Address
Heidelberglaan 8
3584 CS Utrecht
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Boubker Kaouass (Mr.)
JRC -JOINT RESEARCH CENTRE- EUROPEAN COMMISSION
Belgium
EU contribution
€ 311 040
Address
Rue De La Loi 200
1049 Brussels
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Kris Engelen (Dr.)
TECHNOLOGIKO PANEPISTIMIO KYPROU
Cyprus
EU contribution
€ 362 400
Address
Archbishop Kyprianos 31 Savings Cooperative Bank Building 3Rd Floor
3036 Lemesos
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Charalambos Chrisostomou (Dr.)
STICHTING WAGENINGEN RESEARCH
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 802 031,90
Address
Droevendaalsesteeg 4
6708 PB Wageningen
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Erik Van Den Elsen (Mr.)
FUNDACION CENTRO DE ESTUDIOS AMBIENTALES DEL MEDITERRANEO
Spain
EU contribution
€ 418 730,18
Address
Parque Tecnologico, C/ Charles R. Darwin 14
46980 Paterna, Valencia
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Dora Cabrera Avella (Ms.)
UNIVERSITAT DE BARCELONA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 46 261,02
Address
Gran Via De Les Corts Catalanes 585
08007 Barcelona
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Xavier Gutierrez (Mr.)