Cooperation and shared strategies for biodiversity research programmes in Europe
The loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystems are major scientific and societal challenges. Addressing them and providing scientific support to policy requires a coherent research framework, with coordinated strategies and programmes at the regional and international levels, which are the relevant scales for many biodiversity issues.
By networking 21 funding agencies from 15 countries, BiodivERsA aims to strengthen the ERA on biodiversity. Building on the experience of the ERA-Net BiodivERsA, but with a wider, more balanced network, BiodivERsA will promote a strategy for biodiversity research, in partnership with other players in the field, and will organize joint funding to better integrate biodiversity science.
The objectives are to:
- develop an efficient agenda-setting mechanism, based on a continuously developed strategy linking existing international agendas with national and institutional priorities
- instate a recurrent, well-identified funding scheme for transnational biodiversity research projects
- play an active role in the processes and interfaces to inform policy and users
- prepare the establishment of a sustainable, independent funding platform for biodiversity research
The project has 6 workpackages. WP1 will promote networking and sharing of best practice, ensuring the rapid integration of new members and the adoption of a framework for joint calls. WP2 will analyse the landscape and cooperate with stakeholders identifying research needs, with science-policy interfaces and with relevant infrastructure programmes. Using outputs of WP1&2, WP3 will produce a roadmap for joint funding and implement 3 calls within the project timespan. These activities will ultimately create the conditions for the network to become a sustainable funding platform for European biodiversity research, which will be fostered by WP4. WP5 will develop and implement a communication strategy and enhance project web-products. WP6 deals with coordination and management.
BiodivERsA is a network of 21 research-funding agencies across 15 European countries. It is a second-generation ERA-Net, funded under the EU's 7th Framework Programme for Research, and works to coordinate national research programmes on biodiversity across Europe and to organize international funding for research projects in this field, on a competitive basis. In 2008, BiodivERsA launched a major European call on biodiversity, through which 12 international research projects have been selected and supported for a total funding of 14.2 M€. The consortium has launched a second European call on biodiversity and ecosystem services in November 2010, for a total budget of 11.1 M€.