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You are here: Events > 2017+ > Environment - Biodiversity
Last update: 15 December 2017

Symposium: Measuring Biodiversity and Extinction, Present and Past

7 January 2018, San Francisco, USA

This symposium marks a knowledge transfer event at the conclusion of a Marie Curie Global Fellowship experience for the organiser, Dr Julia Sigwart (Director, Queen's University Belfast, Marine Laboratory, UK).

Changing biodiversity is a major concern for all biologists. Anthropogenic changes to our planet are decreasing species diversity through the negative impacts of pollution, habitat destruction, direct extirpation of species, and climate change.

Mass extinction events (and subsequent recoveries) have happened before in Earth’s history, and these provide important context to understand ecological responses to modern environmental change.

The work of assessing biodiversity is woven into ecology, environmental science, conservation, phylogenetics, evo-devo, and many other disciplines; yet, ultimately the way we measure species diversity depends on taxonomy and systematics.

The aspiration of this symposium, and complementary contributed talks, is to promote better understanding of our common goals and encourage future interdisciplinary discussion on biodiversity dynamics.

The symposium will bring together a diverse group of speakers to confront several important themes:

1. How can biologists best respond to the urgent need to identify and conserve diversity?

2. Where are the major gaps in knowledge about the diversity of living animal groups, and what are the implications for understanding potential diversity loss?

3. How can we effectively use the fossil record of past diversity and extinction to understand current biodiversity loss?

Further information


Second Arctic Science Ministerial

25-26 October 2018, Berlin, Germany.

The European Commission, Finland and Germany will co-host the 2nd Arctic Science Ministerial (ASM 2) on 25-26 October 2018 in Berlin.

The aims of this 2nd ministerial meeting are to promote the results of the deliverables agreed at the 1st Arctic Science Ministerial, increase capacity to respond to major societal challenges in the Arctic, encourage further scientific cooperation among a large number of countries and representatives of indigenous peoples.

The 1st Arctic Science Ministerial, hosted by the White House in 2016, brought together science ministers from 24 governments, EU representatives and delegates from Arctic Indigenous peoples’ organisations. Their discussions centred on collective efforts to step up international scientific cooperation in the Arctic. The 2nd Arctic Science Ministerial is not an Arctic Council event. However, Finland is chairing the Arctic Council from May 2017 to May 2019. This guarantees strong links between the Ministerial and the Arctic Council. All  delegations present at the 1st Ministerial and other interested governments are invited - participation of indigenous Arctic communities is a priority.

What will be on the agenda?

On Day 1 an Arctic Science Conference will showcase the latest achievements as regards the deliverables agreed for each thematic area at the 1st Ministerial. The discussion will focus on scientific advances in the deliverables and on the commitment needed in future. It will be open to a wide range of Arctic stakeholders, policymakers and media. The first day of the conference will be followed by an evening networking reception at 7 p.m. These discussions will prepare the ground for Day 2 on which government ministers and delegates will meet to discuss the main scientific issues. The main objectives are to release a Joint Statement, issue a report on initiatives taken over the preceding 2 years and an updated list of deliverables expected to generate results over the next few years. Further details will be published in the run-up to the conference.


Events earlier this year

You are here: Events > 2017 > Environment - Biodiversity
Last update: 15 December 2017
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Science Café with Thomas Jung

6 December 2017, Brussels, Belgium

Science Café with Thomas Jung is an unconventional open discussion with theme "Phytophthora species – threats for our nature".

Thomas Jung is one of the most renowned Phytophthora experts in the world. Phytophthora is a genus of plant-damaging Oomycetes (water molds), whose member species are capable of causing enormous economic losses on crops worldwide, as well as environmental damage in natural ecosystems.

Thomas Jung produced the first evidences of Phytophthora pathogens being involved in widespread forest declines in Europe and coordinated the largest forest disease survey in European history.

His current institution is the Mendel University in Brno, Czech Republic, where he runs the Phytophthora Research Centre.

Science Café is a forum for discussion of current work and interesting scientific issues. It aims to be informal and accessible.

Anyone can participate; speaker is there to be questioned and to talk about his work.

Further information


1+1=3 - How agroforestry boosts revenues and resilience of Europe's farmers

29 November 2017, Brussels, Belgium

Attend this meeting at the European Parliament, hosted by Paul Brannen MEP, to hear and discuss how agroforestry and European research are boosting the revenues and resilience of Europe’s farmers. The meeting starts with presentations on the results of the AGFORWARD research project including the launch of the AGFORWARD folder of innovation and best practice leaflets. A panel will then discuss how we can mainstream agroforestry in Europe. The panel includes: Clara Aguilera Garcia MEP (Vice Chair, Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, European Parliament), Olivier De Schutter (Co-chair of the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems), Valentin Opfermann (Policy Advisor on Agricultural and Environmental Research and Environmental Issues at COPA-COGECA), Mauro Poinelli (Head of Unit Environment, Forestry and Climate Change, DG AGRI, European Commission), and Patrick Worms (Senior Science Policy Adviser at the World Agroforestry Centre). There will be a time for questions and the meeting will be followed by a drinks reception and an opportunity for networking.

Further information


8th International Scientific Conference ‘RURAL DEVELOPMENT 2017: Bioeconomy Challenges’

23-24 November 2017, Kaunas, Lithuania

The aim of the 8th International Scientific Conference ‘RURAL DEVELOPMENT 2017: Bioeconomy Challenges’ is to provide scientific interdisciplinary discussion and to share new ideas for sustainable rural development in the context of Knowledge, Innovations and Social Progress.

The scope of the Conference covers four main areas: Biosystems Engineering and Environment, Agro-innovations and Food Technologies, Multifunctional Approach for Sustainable Use of Natural Resources, and Social Innovations for Rural Development.

The Conference ‘Rural Development’ organized biannually since 2003 is attracting to Aleksandras Stulginskis University over 300 scientists from more than 25 countries. All the peer-reviewed conference papers will have been published in open access Proceedings of the conference (online ISSN 2345-0916, print ISSN 1822-3230). Proceedings of International Scientific Conference “Rural Development” are published periodically every two years since 2003 and indexed by Thomson Reuters (Web of Science), EBSCO (Academic Search Complete).

Further information


EU Research and Innovation Day at COP23

15 November 2017, COP23, Bonn zone, EU pavilion, Room 1

European Commission's DG Research and Innovation is organising a EU Research and Innovation Day at COP 23. During this day, several issues - such as 1.5 & 2°C strategies, Arctic science contributions to implementing the Paris Agreement or Climate Services for Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries - will be discussed. The complete programme is available below.

Further information

Related documentation


2nd COLUMBUS Annual Conference 2017 "Achieving Impact from Marine Research"

7 November 2017, Brussels, Belgium

The 2nd COLUMBUS International Blue Society Knowledge Transfer Conference will take place in Brussels on 7 November 2017.

An international forum to bring together actors interested in sharing best practice and learning about initiatives and sectoral progress in Knowledge Transfer.

This conference will offer an opportunity to collaboratively explore the barriers, challenges and possible solutions to achieving the impact potential of marine and maritime research, at all stages of the funding cycle.

Training on the COLUMBUS Knowledge Transfer methodology will be available, targeted towards EU staff and funding agencies. ABOUT The COLUMBUS project intends to capitalise on the European Commission’s significant investment in marine and maritime research by ensuring accessibility and uptake of research Knowledge Outputs by end-users: policy, industry, science and wider society.

COLUMBUS will ensure measurable value creation from research investments contributing to sustainable Blue Growth within the timeframe of the project.

Further information



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