The EU 7th Framework Programme is supporting a project called LIBERATION (LInking farmland Biodiversity to Ecosystem seRvices for effective ecofunctional intensificATION). This project aims to provide the evidence base for ecological intensification, to demonstrate management options, and build capacity amongst scientists and policy makers to support a transition to a more ecologically-based agricultural production system.
As part of this project the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), with its partner the Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research (PAR) based in Rome, are charged with establishing a Community of Practice on Ecological Intensification.
Global imperatives to provide adequate food and nutrition security over the next several decades point to a need to enhance the productive capacity of agricultural land. Rather than continue a “green-revolution” path of depending upon external inputs to increase production, ecological intensification – the optimization of ecosystem services in the agricultural production process – has been proposed as a promising solution.
As a quite new and in many respects untested approach to sustaining and increasing agricultural production, the emerging field of ecological intensification can benefit from the inputs of people and practitioners that have begun considering and applying relevant concepts in their work and research, to build a cohesive research community. As a contribution to building such a community, FAO and PAR (through LIBERATION) are establishing an information-sharing platform to animate a community of practice amongst specialists in fields relevant to ecological intensification.
We invite you to register on the site, and to invite your students and colleagues interested in the topic to sign on as well.
Every community needs a common language, and we are therefore initiating this forum with a discussion on some of the more difficult to define terms proposed for inclusion in the “Glossary of terms on ecosystem services in agriculture” produced for LIBERATION in late 2013 (and still to be finalized, through this peer review). We will then continue on to review the “Annotated Bibliography on Ecological Intensification“, also produced for Liberation in late 2013 (and also still to be finalized or continuously updated, through this peer review).
Further topics will focus on addressing emerging issues in ecological intensification that merit in-depth literature reviews, and identification of best practices in implementation, as well as discussion topics proposed by the community.
The site will be moderated by Paul Bordoni, Helga Gruberg and Benjamin Graub. We ask that each person joining the forum introduce themselves, starting with our moderators.
We look forward to interacting with you on this platform,
With best regards,
Dr Barbara Gemmill-Herren
Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations
Dr Toby Hodgkin
Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research