MRI News
poppies 76129 1280 thumbThe Swiss Network for International Studies (SNIS) offers project grants for pluri-disciplinary research teams. The project grants run for two years and range from 100,000 to 300,000 Swiss Francs. The call for projects for 2019 is open until 16 January. 

Swiss institutions of higher education and research are invited to submit project proposals in the pluri-disciplinary field of international studies or relating to the special topic: What options for climate change mitigation without multilateralism? To apply, research teams must submit a pre-proposal that contains the description of the project (approx. 4-5 pages) as well as information on the submitting research team members. The SNIS Scientific Committee will then decide which applicants are invited to submit a full proposal.

Read more: Call for Projects | Swiss Network for International Studies

madeira 103242 640An article published in Remote Sensing explores the use of satellite products to examine the current state of and trends in the supply of ecosystem services. 

Mountains are facing strong environmental pressures, which may jeopardize the supply of various ecosystem services. For sustainable land management, ecosystem services and their supporting functions should thus be evaluated and monitored. Satellite products have been receiving growing attention for monitoring ecosystem functioning, mainly due to their increasing temporal and spatial resolutions. This study aims to illustrate the high potential of satellite products, combined with ancillary in situ and statistical data, to monitor the current state and trend of ecosystem services in the Peneda-Gerês National Park, a protected mountain range in Portugal located in a transition climatic zone (Atlantic to Mediterranean).

Read more: New Publication | Ecosystem Services in a Protected Mountain Range of Portugal: Satellite-Based...

Publication cover imageA new study provides unique insights into the management of soil and water in the Páramo in south Ecuador – with implications for other peat-dominated ecosystems.

Páramo soils store high amounts of organic carbon. However, the effects of climate change and changes in land cover and use (LC/LU) in this high‐elevation tropical ecosystem may cause a decrease in their carbon storage capacity. Therefore, better understanding of the factors influencing the Páramo soils' carbon storage and export is urgently needed. To fill this knowledge gap, researchers investigated the differences in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) content in the soil water of four LC/LU types (tussock grass, natural forest, pine plantations, and pasture) and the factors controlling its variability in the Quinuas Ecohydrological Observatory in south Ecuador.

Weekly measurements of soil water DOC concentrations, meteorological variables, soil water content, and temperature from various depths and slope positions were monitored within the soils' organic and mineral horizons between October 2014 and January 2017. This data was then used to generate regression trees and random forest statistical models to identify the factors controlling soil water DOC concentrations.

Read more: New Publication | Effect of land cover and hydro‐meteorological controls on soil water DOC...

vibrant 1617470 200x150With the International Climate Protection Fellowships, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation enables prospective leaders in academia and industry to implement a research based proposal in the field of climate protection or climate-related resource conservation during a one-year stay in Germany. The closing date for applications is 1 March 2019.

Up to 20 International Climate Protection Fellowships are granted annually, funded under the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety’s (BMU) International Climate Initiative. The fellowships target prospective leaders from non-European transition and developing countries (see list of countries). Candidates draw up their own research-based proposal which they then implement in collaboration with a host in Germany.

Read more: New Opportunity | Alexander von Humboldt Foundation International Climate Protection Fellowships

egu gaTaking place in Vienna, Austria 7–12 April 2019, the EGU 2019 General Assembly will bring together geoscientists from all over the world to explore all disciplines of the Earth, planetary, and space sciences. This year, there are a number of exciting, mountain-related sessions – including several led by the MRI.

The EGU aims to provide a forum where scientists, especially early-career researchers, can present their work and discuss their ideas with experts in all fields of geoscience. Abstract submissions are now invited for all sessions, including those being convened by representatives from the MRI. The deadline for abstract submission is 10 January 2019.

agriculture small 150x200A new Issue Brief highlighting the need to localize the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for the resilience of mountain people and ecosystems was released today, 24 October, at the World Mountain Forum 2018 in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. This publication was developed by the MRI and the Center for Development and Environment as part of our collaboration on the Sustainable Mountain Development for Global Change (SMD4GC) programme. 

Pledging to “leave no one behind,” the United Nations 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have major potential to advance sustainable mountain development and strengthen the resilience of communities and ecosystems in mountain areas. But to realize that potential, the SDGs must be translated – or localized – to mountain areas. This will enable policymakers and implementers at the local, national, regional, and global levels to understand mountain priorities, customize actions, and measure progress towards the SDGs.

Read more: New MRI & CDE Issue Brief | Leaving No One in Mountains Behind

Publication cover imageA new study provides insights into water balance and evaporation losses in tropical alpine glacial lakes, which can serve as baseline information for future isotope‐based hydro‐climate research in high‐elevation regions in the tropics and elsewhere.

Tropical high‐elevation lakes are considered sentinels of global climate change. This work characterizes the hydrological conditions of tropical alpine glacial lakes located in the highlands of Chirripó, Costa Rica, using a unique data set of water stable isotopes (δ2H and δ18O) in precipitation, stream water, and lake water between September 2015 and July 2017.

A combined dataset of bathymetric, hydrometric, and isotope data collected between July 2016 and July 2017 on Lake Ditkevi was used to calculate the annual water balance of the lake. Evaporation to inflow ratios from three lake systems was estimated using a linear resistance model, the experimentally estimated local evaporation line of Chirripó, and the first glacial lake water evaporation lines in the region.

Read more: New Publication: Insight into the Stable Isotopic Composition of Glacial Lakes in a Tropical...