Description of the management plan of the exchange scheme
The project is organized to ensure a close linkage between all team members. The exchange programme NEWFORESTS will be managed through a governing board having one representative per partner organisation (WP 6) which will supervise that all scientific activities are carried out according to the planned exchange. Consultation with governmental and private partners will be made on a regular basis.
The actions promoting the reinforcement of transatlantic initiatives have been divided in two different categories according to their nature and the character of the specific objective to be achieved: mobility and promotion of innovation.
Mobility: Actions aimed at promoting the visit of researchers and students into each other’s organisations. These actions focus on the implementation of specific research projects involving actors from the different lab’s partner organisation.
- Experienced researcher stays: Based in the described WP and tasks and in relation of the priorities agreed upon after general thematic discussions including the research pan outlined in the work packages. These stays range from 1 to 12 months in length.
- Early stage researchers: promoting the development of common projects supervised by experienced researchers from at least two of the project partner’s organisations. These exchanges may range from 1 to 6 months in length.
- Technicians and management staff: promoting the exchange of specific knowledge at the technical or administrative level between the partners. These exchanges may range from 1 to 3 months in length.
Promotion of innovation exchange: Actions aimed at promoting the exchange of ideas and approaches between the partners and eventually between them and third parties.
- Annual meetings aimed at refining common thematic lines of collaboration between the labs. The meetings should have specific expected outputs that will mainly revolve around the identification of priority areas where partner collaboration and integration of available knowledge will have a stronger impact. Ongoing communications will also be conducted via email and all pertinent information about the project will be put on a website. Skype meetings will be also a common communication methodology to be regularly established to serve as complement to the exchanges between partners.
- Favour the involvement of researchers from partner organisations (as core researchers or observers) into active or planned projects to enhance effective transfer of knowledge and skills.
- Thematic cross cutting workshops of special interest will be organized to strengthen the longer-term vision of research teams within and beyond the partnership, and can serve as a basis for future activities. These workshops will be key to ensuring that each partner institution brings its own specific expertise, knowledge and vision to the joint programme and that exchanges can occur and synergies be found, in a longer-term perspective.
- Promote the development of common, transcontinental research projects, based on the existing collaborations but also the outputs of the cross cutting workshops.
NEWFORESTS will inform the various stakeholders (governments, industries and private organizations) about the project results using already existing online magazine. This will be implemented through the existing national networks and efforts will be deployed to the dissemination by NEWFORESTS as a consortium in international forest networks or international initiatives bridging the gap between research and policy making such as IPBES (Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services).
Scientific papers and technical review papers will be published during the project as one of the main outputs from ongoing collaboration between partners. We aim to publish approximately 15 high quality scientific papers, a few book chapters, some technical papers, and articles for the general public on (1) how tree species and functional diversity operate in affecting forest ecosystem functioning, and (2) what is the role of tree species mixtures, using both native and exotic species, in producing more productive and resilient natural and managed forests.
The present IRSES project aims to generate a basis for sustainable cooperation even after the project duration, principally by two different but complementing strategies:
- First, by favouring an exchange of research governance structures by fostering the possibility to create a similar CEF structure in Europe. Since the cooperation between the CEF and both Catalonian centres begun, Spanish partners have been assessing the possibilities of creating a similar excellence network to CEF aimed at catalysing forest research critical mass within Spanish Universities and research centres. The NEWFORESTS project will bring the opportunity of consolidate an initial platform not only among Spanish centres, but also with the French participants. The CBAE and the associated research institute CEFE are part of the LabEx CEMEB – Mediterranean Center for Environment and Biodiversity.
- Second, IRSES could be scaled up to the creation of an International Research Laboratory (IRL) between CEF and the European partners. The international lab will be created with specific objectives related to the response of forest to global change, as part of the general research lines of the future European CEF. Again, the NEWFORESTS initiative will serve as first step in the consolidation of such International Laboratory.