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12 Dec 2014 | Ecosystem services

Managing Mountain Ecosystems for Sustaining Services

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ICIMOD organized a special session on ‘Managing Mountain Ecosystems for Sustaining Services’ during the Tropical Ecology Congress 2014, jointly organized by the School of Environmental Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi and the International Society for Tropical Ecology on 10 December at JNU’s Convention Centre. The main objective of the event was to provide an update on emerging scientific knowledge in ecosystem services, including the tools and techniques for their assessment (e.g., geospatial analysis on a landscape level, ecorestoration) and the response of mountain ecosystems to various drivers of change.

A panel consisting of senior practitioners and scientists from the region and global conservation champions addressed a range of important topics. These included the role of biogeographical factors and evolutionary history in determining present-day mountain ecosystems; the generalities in ecosystem properties and dynamics of mountain ecosystems; the changing link between ecosystems and human wellbeing; ecosystems most sensitive to changes; best practices and policy actions for effective mountain ecosystem management; and the ways to strike a balance between conservation and development.

About 80 participants from across the globe participated in the event. Dr Eklabya Sharma, Director of Programme Operations at ICIMOD, highlighted the key challenges and opportunities for mountain ecosystem management in the Hindu Kush Himalayas, followed by presentations from Prof. S. P. Singh from the Institute of Technology and Science, India, Dr Nakul Chettri, Dr Eklabya Sharma and Prof Wu Ning from ICIMOD, Prof. Ram Chaudhary from RECAST, Nepal, Dr Sangay Wangchuk from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forest, Bhutan, Dr Ghanashyam Sharma from TMI, India, and Dr Gopal Rawat from the Wildlife Institute of India. The panellists addressed the questions posed by the participants and discussed potential solutions to the emerging challenges faced by the mountain ecosystems.

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