Worldwide, coastal systems are facing several pressures associated to human actions and climate change, which seriously compromises the functioning of these systems and the variety of ecosystem services (ES) and nature contributions to people (NCP) they provide to society.
Submerged vegetated habitats dominated by seagrasses meadows play a crucial role in the functioning of coastal systems and provide fundamental ES to society. However, most seagrasses, P. oceanica and their associated habitats are seriously threatened by climate change and human actions leading to a global decrease.
A deeper understanding of the social-ecological dynamics around seagrass habitats is urgently required to advance towards an integrated ecosystem assessment. So far, research and valuation of ES provided by seagrasses has mainly focussed on contributing and regulating ES while the study and analysis of cultural services has been barely addressed. The few works addressing the contribution of seagrasses to cultural services has been conducted under the perspective of management and policy while the contributions of seagrasses to human wellbeing and the indirect cultural connections remains largely unexplored.
To understand the different contexts and perceptions and to drive societal transformations in seagrass habitats, interdisciplinary cross-sectoral perspectives and approaches are required.
Developing and using methodologies and communications tools able to capture this information and communicate it to different audiences (e.g. scientists, administrations, NGOs, private sectors) is a critically important priority for grating the future sustainability of seagrass ecosystems.
PATHGRASS will assemble an interdisciplinary research group to identify and articulate new bases and tools in the study of human-nature connectedness in seagrass habitats. This workshop will act as a seed for visualizing and understanding the diverse values of seagrass habitats and trigger sustainable transformation expanding the social dimension into the marine systems.
Hosted by Universidad de Almería (Spain), the PATHGRASS workshop is expected to last 3 days, in Almería (Spain).
Pathways for connecting people and seagrasses (PATHGRASS) will:
- Advance our understanding on how multiple values and leverage points of human-nature connectedness can be applied to seagrasses.
- Identify the framework and tool-box needed to facilitate a socio-ecological multiple values assessment in seagrass meadows, deepening into human-nature connectedness in seagrass ecology.
- Contribute to networking for multidisciplinary research communities from seagrasses, socio-ecological systems, and sustainable transformation areas.
- Promote knowledge transfer between researchers from different disciplines.
- Publication of a position paper on human dimension of conservation.
- Facilitating a European network for socio-ecological research in seagrass.
- Setting up the basis of a consortium for a European research proposal.
The knowledge generated will guide future research, also contributing towards sustainable the Blue Growth initiatives and to the preservation of coastal communities dominated by seagrasses, their associated ES and their cultural heritage values.
Funded by Euromarine, registration for the open parts of the workshop is free of charge, all registered participants (limit of 20) can participate, on a basis of first-come, first-served.
5 places will be reserved for students (preferentially PhD and early-career scientists)
Accepted registrants will be informed one month before the workshop.
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