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Challenges in assessing and forecasting biodiversity and ecosystem changes in Europe

Objective

A range of advanced modelling approaches has been used so far to assess the impact of global change on biodiversity and ecosystems. These assessments include advanced socio-economic scenarios and yield projections of the distribution of species, communities and biomes and the functioning of ecosystems. Future goods and services are then assessed from these projections.

However, four main limitations remain associated with these approaches:
1. Knowledge and data of past species' distribution is still limited, yet necessary for testing them in the past before projecting them to the future
2. We miss sound estimates of species' long distance migration rates in order to assess whether species will be able to keep pace with rapid global change
3. Some key assumptions of models, such as niche stability over time and/or space, are not well tested
4. We need more reliable estimate of uncertainties in model predictions.

Our project specifically proposes to go one step further by:
1. Integrating different modelling app roaches currently in use (niche-based, dynamic, dispersal, etc.), and by developing robust methodologies to estimate uncertainties associated with these projections
2. Generating required new data (palaeo & migration) by using innovative DNA-based appr oaches, and global change scenarios
3. Testing niche conservatism and temporal evolution of biological communities
4. Using the new data in improved and integrated models to make projections more robust and realistic
5. Testing these approaches in case study areas and expanding the current projections to all of Europe.

Our consortium encompasses a wide spectrum of skills required to meet these objectives. Our final goal is to provide data, scenarios and associated confidence limits so that policy markers and land managers can use them for anticipating societal problems and for designing sustainable conservation strategies by accounting the most likely global change effects on biodiversity and ecosystems.

Leaflet | Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors, Credit: EC-GISCO, © EuroGeographics for the administrative boundaries

Coordinator

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE

Address

Rue Michel-Ange 3
Paris

France

Administrative Contact

Pierre TABERLET (Dr)

Participants (23)

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EIDGENOESSISCHE FORSCHUNGSANSTALT WSL

Switzerland

SERI - NACHHALTIGKEITSFORSCHUNGS UND -KOMMUNIKATIONS GMBH

Austria

KOBENHAVNS UNIVERSITET

Denmark

UNIVERSITETET I OSLO

Norway

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON

United Kingdom

UNIVERSITAET BASEL

Switzerland

INSTYTUT BOTANIKI IM. WLADYSLAWA SZAFERA, POLSKA AKADEMIA NAUK

Poland

INSTITUTUL DE CERCETARI BIOLOGICE CLUJ-NAPOCA

Romania

MEDIAS FRANCE

France

V.I.N.C.A. - INSTITUT FUER NATURSCHUTZFORSCHUNG UND OEKOLOGIE GMBH

Austria

UNIVERSITETET I TROMSOE

Norway

TARTU UELIKOOL

Estonia

CONSEJO SUPERIOR DE INVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS

Spain

UNIWERSYTET IM. ADAMA MICKIEWICZA W POZNANIU

Poland

WAGENINGEN UNIVERSITEIT

Netherlands

UNIVERSITE DE LIEGE

Belgium

ZOOLOGICAL INSTITUTE OF RUSSIAN ACADEMY OF SCIENCES

Russia

UNIVERSITY OF EAST ANGLIA

United Kingdom

STICHTING DIENST LANDBOUWKUNDIG ONDERZOEK

Netherlands

THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH

United Kingdom

LUNDS UNIVERSITET

Sweden

UNIVERSITÄT ZÜRICH

Switzerland

UNIVERSITÉ DE LAUSANNE

Switzerland

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 36866

  • Start date

    1 January 2007

  • End date

    31 March 2012

Funded under:

FP6-SUSTDEV

  • Overall budget:

    € 8 942 359

  • EU contribution

    € 6 999 998

Coordinated by:

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE

France