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Biodiversity in Europe
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The future

The future of biodiversity research

In Europe, as elsewhere, understanding and responsible management of biodiversity becomes ever more critical. European research and its applications will be vital to preserve the unspoilt habitats, and to restore and manage habitats under stress.

Areas of biodiversity requiring focused research include:

  • Inventory – Improving the taxonomy and systematics of many groups, paying particular attention to endangered species;

  • Monitoring – A network for long-term biodiversity is required;

  • Genetic variation – Breakthroughs in DNA technology will be invaluable when applied to understanding ecosystem structure, function and resilience;

  • Quality of habitats – Methods of monitoring habitat quality are needed, including supervising the impact of management;

  • Habitat loss and fragmentation – Enhanced understanding of the impact of loss and fragmentation is needed;

  • Biological invasion – Research is required to understand the impact of invasive organisms, including genetically modified organisms;

  • Economic drivers in biodiversity loss – Understanding and quantification of the impact of habitat loss and conservation is critical in undertaking effective biodiversity management; and

  • Climate change – Research into the response of species and habitats to climate change is necessary, along with how they can be preserved.

Through pan-European research and policy development, Europe is in a strong position to meet the existing biodiversity challenges and those resulting from growing populations and industrialisation.

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The future