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Science for the Carpathians: Using Regional Capacity to Cope with Global Change

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Book (peer-reviewed)
Publication date 2013
Author Gurung Astrid Björnsen,
Project Global Change and Mountain Regions: the Mountain Research Initiative Coordination Office
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Book (peer-reviewed)

Publisher Springer-Verlag, Berlin
ISBN 978-3-642-12725-0
DOI 10.1007/978-3-642-12725-0_2


Emphasizing the global and regional importance of mountain ecosystem services and referring to the anticipated future environmental changes affecting the provision of these services, this chapter takes a closer look at the Carpathian Mountains. In addition to climate change and general effects of globalization, rapid socioeconomic transformations after the fall of the Iron Curtain pose an extra challenge to the sustainable development of the region. Describing the early efforts of organizing mountain science through programs such as UNESCO MAB and UNEP at the global scale, this chapter focuses on the recent history of research coordination for the European mountains, in particular on the activities of the Carpathian Convention and the European Program of the Mountain Research Initiative, which were among main driving factors for the initiation of the Science for the Carpathians (S4C) network. This regional mountain research network was established in 2008 to foster scientific collaboration and communication and to promote applied research and capacity building, which in turn would support sustainable development in the Carpathian Mountains. Forum Carpaticum, a biennial open science conference, has become a central activity of the S4C network counting more than 400 members today.