Mediterranean Forest Research Agenda 2030: Aims and Proposed Themes

Read about the aims, process, and four proposed themes of the MFRA 2030.

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MFRA 2030
Photo: Pexels.

Ten years have passed since the formulation of the Mediterranean Forest Research Agenda 2011-2020 (MFRA 2020). The new knowledge generated over the past decade by a vibrant research community has also revealed new questions and uncovered critical knowledge gaps.

Meanwhile, climate and social change are rapidly transforming the underpinnings of the complex social ecological systems at work in the Mediterranean, challenging the foundations of our research and innovation priorities. Now is the opportune moment to review the achievements we have made in the last 10 years, to agree on new shared priorities for research, and to translate this research to action. On the precipice of the next decade of work, we can together navigate the uncertain waters of global change.

AIMS

We aim to:

  1. Reflect on the most relevant advances made by the Mediterranean forest research community, with special attention to the priorities set in the MFRA 2020
  2. Identify the most relevant common challenges that Mediterranean forests –understood as social ecological systems– will be facing in the next decade, and
  3. Develop a common set of themes and strategic research priorities.

The final objective of this collective effort is to foster transnational research cooperation, mobilising research funds towards the agreed priorities.

PROCESS

Constructing the MFRA 2030 is a collective effort, open to the participation of researchers, policymakers, stakeholders, and other experts from across the EFIMED network, and the Mediterranean forest-related community at large. We seek contributions from and about Southern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, as well as from other Mediterranean climate areas.

We will use the MedForest.net platform to reach and engage with our wide Mediterranean network, to share key documents, broadcast exciting events, provide dynamic opportunities for participation through workshops and seminars, and to invite contributions from actors – and readers like you – across the region.

Join us in this effort, so we can together create the knowledge platform for improving the resilience of Mediterranean forested landscapes, and thus, the region as a whole.

We have defined the following steps:

  1. Looking back on the MFRA 2020: how far have we advanced in the MFRA 2020 themes? Are they still the top priorities?
  2. Looking forward to the MFRA 2030: What are the emerging gaps?
  3. Collecting feedback: through contributions on this website, participatory webinars, and expert reviews of the proposed themes.

PROPOSED THEMES

Preeminent experts and distinguished co-authors in the domains of each of the four proposed themes have prepared a high-level review of their topic within the Mediterranean context, highlighting critical gaps and laying the groundwork for fruitful future research supported by the MFRA 2030.

These papers are currently being internally peer reviewed. They will be published here in the form of working papers for broader discussion. Later, the authors plan to take consolidated versions of their papers for publication in scientific journals. The details of the academic team for each theme are below.

Theme A: Conservation and management of biodiversity and forest genetic resources

Bruno Fady, French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (INRAE)

François Lefèvre, French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (INRAE)

Theme B: Forest resilience in a context of global change related forest disturbances

Josep Peñuelas, Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)

Jordi Sardans, Center for Ecological Research and Forestry Applications (CREAF)

Theme C: Forest management addressing trade-offs and synergies between multiple ecosystem services

Susanna Nocentini, University of Florence

Theme D: Social and business innovations and policy instruments to implement the Mediterranean forest-based bio-economy

Laura Secco, University of Padova.

With Elena Pisani, Elena Górriz-Mifsud, Mauro Masiero, Paola Gatto and Davide Pettenella