MRI Global Newsletter | January 2018

MRI Global Newsletter | January 2018

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MRI Global Newsletter

January 2018



January 2018 | An Exciting Year Ahead

january pathwaysHappy New Year! We hope you have had a good start to 2018. 

Here at the MRI Coordination Office we have a busy year ahead, with many developments planned. These will be unveiled over the course of 2018. Watch this space!

Meanwhile, in this January edition of our newsletter we present the latest stories, publications, and opportunities from across the global mountain research network.

Enjoy your read.


8th Group on Earth Observations (GEO) Programme Board Meeting, 31 January - 1 February, WMO Geneva, Switzerland.

Second lead authors meeting (LAM2) and public outreach events for the IPCC Special Report on Oceans and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC), 12-16 February, Quito, Ecuador.

Second meeting of the MRI Principal Investigators and MRI Strategy Meeting, 6 March, Bern, Switzerland.

Management Committee and Executive Board meeting of the International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA), 23-25 March, Kathmandu, Nepal.


Hope Against Hazards

glacier smallA new technical document from GAPHAZ aims to provide clear guidance on the assessment of hazards related to glaciers and permafrost – thereby protecting the lives and livelihoods of people living in mountain regions across the globe.  
As mountain landscapes rapidly warm and change, the threats to those living on and around them also evolve. Contemporary transformations in mountain glaciers and permafrost can lead to catastrophic mass flows, such as ice and rock avalanches, para- or periglacial debris flows, and floods from glacial lakes.

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Geography and XXI Century Challenges | IGU Thematic Conference

russia mountainsTaking place 4-6 June 2018 in Moscow, this thematic conference's rich and varied programme has plenty to offer the mountain research community. 

Held under the auspices of the International Geographical Union (IGU), Geography and XXI Century Challenges is a thematic conference dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Institute of Geography of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

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Polar Access Fund Launched

arctic ocean 79833 1280 smallThe Swiss Polar Institute has launched a new funding instrument to support early-career scientists to take field trips to polar regions.

The Polar Access Fund is open to any doctoral student or early post-doctoral researcher based at a Swiss university or research institution, and aims to enable young researchers to undertake their first field trip to a polar region.

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Call for Symposia | Mountains 2018 - Deadline Extended!

campos do jordao 2934837 1280 smallThe II International Conference on Research for Sustainable Development in Mountain Regions, part of Mountains 2018, invites proposals for symposia until 25 February 2018.

Taking place in Nova Friburgo, Brazil, 10-14 December, Mountains 2018 aims to promote sustainable development in mountains based on science, knowledge, and innovation.

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Call for Submissions | Climate Change Responses

allgau 2972900 smallThe journal Climate Change Responses is now accepting submissions for a special thematic series on 'Mechanisms underlying dynamics of montane ecosystems and species in an era of climate variability and change.'

This special series is looking for papers examining the interactions between abiotic and biotic processes in montane ecosystems from community, species, and genetic perspectives; all taxonomic focuses are welcome.

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Call for Applications | IRDR Young Scientists Program

earthquake 1665878 640 smallYoung researchers are encouraged to contribute to innovative research in the field of disaster risk through this exciting, capacity building Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR) program. 

IRDR is a global, trans-disciplinary research program, sponsored by the ICSU, the ISSC, and the UNISDR, that focuses on the challenges brought by natural disasters, mitigating their impacts, and improving related policy-making mechanisms. 

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Call for Abstracts | Symposium on Livestock Farming in Mountain Areas

Icown June 2018, the 1st European Symposium on Livestock Farming in Mountain Areas will be held in South Tyrol, Italy.  

This event aims to cover a broad range of topics, including animal husbandry and breeding, agricultural economics, landscape conservation, and social sciences related to mountain livestock. Research contributions from all relevant disciplines are welcome. 

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Call for Submissions | Focus Collection of Environmental Research Letters

cobweb smallSubmissions are invited for an upcoming focus collection of the journal Environmental Research Letters entitled ‘Environmental Research Infrastructures: New Scientific Capabilities to Address Global Challenges.'
Cooperative and interdisciplinary contributions are sought that pull together ideas from ecology, biogeochemistry, Earth sciences, and/or social sciences. 

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Latest Posts | MRI Blogs

Check out the latest blog posts from members of our global mountain research community.

To date, there has been almost no research on lichen biogeography, survival strategies, persistence, and the mechanics of gene flow in South Africa’s ancient Drakensberg mountain landscape. Afromont is therefore preparing to initiate a small study on mountain forest lichens on the Drakensberg escarpment.

A new, innovative research project will create the first synthetic overview of four key aspects of African tropical montane forests: the ecosystem services generated, current and future threats, a model of their socio-ecological functioning, and an overview of possible management recommendations that promote sustainable resource provision.

"I left the conference thinking that we still have a chance to spark transformations," says MRI SLC member Catherine Tucker of the PECSii conference, at which participants from across the globe explored social-ecological predicaments and possibilities for constructive development.

Missed a post? You can catch up with all our previous blogs on our website.

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Massive collapse of two glaciers in western Tibet in 2016 after surge-like instability

A new article published in Nature Geoscience reports on the massive collapse of two adjacent glaciers in western Tibet in July and September 2016, leading to an unprecedented pair of giant low-angle ice avalanches.

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New issue of eco.mont now available

The January issue of this open-access journal reflects on many aspects of protected mountain areas, including tourism, economic development, and biodiversity.

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Lags in the Response of Mountain Plant Communities to Climate Change

Published in Global Change Biology, this article reviews evidence for three types of lag in the responses of mountain plant communities to climate change, and develops a mechanistic community model to illustrate how species turnover in future communities might lag behind simple expectations based on species range shifts with unlimited dispersal. 

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The Chronology of Reindeer Hunting on Norway's Highest Ice Patches

This article published in Royal Society Open Science illustrates how glacial archeology is uncovering unprecedented historical data on high-elevation human activity as a result of melting perennial ice. 

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Classification of Adaptation Measures and Criteria for Evaluation: Case Studies in the Indus River-Basin

A new HI-AWARE working paper highlights some climate change adaptation options in the Indus region, and emphasizes the need for multi-sectoral involvement in building robust climate change strategies.

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Africa - January 2018

Call for SDG Labs Africa

elephant 3117217 640Do you have an idea for how to spark sustainable transformations in Africa and around the world? The organisers of the upcoming 'Seedbeds of Transformation: the role of science with society and the SDGs in Africa' conference in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, are looking for projects that seek to develop prototype solutions to complex challenges in Africa and beyond. These creative projects should bring together participants from diverse research disciplines and from across society.

Future Earth and its partners will fund up to 20 SDG labs led by innovators at African instutions. The deadline for applications is 16 February.

Interested? Find out more here. 

AfroMont Mountain Research and News Digest, January 2018

201801 afromontintroAfroMont, an online knowledge-sharing platform, was initiated in 2007 by the Mountain Research Initiative (MRI) in Switzerland to focus attention on the diverse issues and challenges facing the mountainous regions of Africa. The specific aim of Afromont is to showcase experiences from research, field projects and best practice in sustainable mountain development and climate change adaptation in African countries, which may be useful or implemented in other countries on the continent.  

A new thrust for 2018 will be to engage with African media to support the investigative reporting of a wide range of climate change, social, ecological and sustainable development issues in Africa as they relate to mountains.

AfroMont now has a Facebook page, see

Photo credit: December in the Central Berg area of the Drakensberg, South Africa (SJ Taylor)

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Latin America - January 2018

20170524 latinamerica main
Presentación de la IAM en el marco de la Reunión Global de la Alianza para las Montañas en Roma.
Los siete gobiernos de los países de Los Andes: Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Perú y Venezuela, han consolidado una plataforma regional de trabajo denominada Iniciativa Andina de Montañas (IAM). El objetivo principal de la IAM es la articulación de las distintas acciones, estrategias y políticas que se está implementando en las zonas montañosas de los países andinos a nivel regional, nacional y local. El 2018 será un gran año para el desarrollo de nuevas propuestas y la consolidación del Plan de Acción para los Andes.

Ver más (informe publicado a través de CONDESAN).
Los expertos seleccionados para el Informe especial sobre el océano y la criosfera en un clima cambiante (SROCC) del Grupo Intergubernamental de Expertos sobre el Cambio Climático (IPCC) , se reunirán en Quito, Ecuador, entre el 12 y 16 de febrero del 2018, para la segunda conferencia de autores del informe especial. La conferencia cuenta con eventos de alcance al público sobre el cambio climático en zonas de montaña, en los cuales habrán presentaciones de CONDESAN y MRI.

The deglaciation of the mountains of Mexico and Central America, L. Vázquez-Selem, M.S. Lachniet

Sincerely yours,

Carolina Adler 
Executive Director
The Mountain Research Intitiative

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