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Project calendar

21-23 MARCH 2017

Final OpenNESS Annual Meeting in Smolenice, Slovakia

Wijnja's blog

OpenNESS’ final impact assessment

Over four years of joint work has almost come to an end. During the final OpenNESS Annual Meeting in Smolenice, Slovakia, the participants presented research outcomes and discussed the impact of OpenNESS’ efforts to operationalise natural capital and ecosystem services. When discussing the way forward and what next it came especially forward that research priorities in the future should be to integrate the societal challenges further, enabling us to handle better the tensions between society and natural processes and pave the way for synergies. Read more »

Ecosystem services and EU regulatory frameworks: how can Oppla help?

The OpenNESS workshop 'Ecosystem services and EU regulatory frameworks: Experiences from real-world decision making' was hosted in Brussels on 2 February 2017. It aimed to encourage a two-directional exchange between science and policy or decision making and for this to be a transdisciplinary co-production of knowledge. At the workshop Oppla was presented as the perfect place to look for products and examples to facilitate real-world decision making. Read more »

Photo: Rob Wolters presents 'How can Oppla help?'

The QUICKScan tool in Science for Environment Policy news alert

Policymakers often have to make decisions under great complexity, uncertainty and time pressure. The QUICKScan tool has been developed for the first stage of policymaking: identifying and exploring alternatives to solve problems. The software tool increases the speed of this process and combines the input of many stakeholders in participatory workshops. It has been applied 70 times in 20 different countries, for a wide range of environmental policy issues. Read more »

Oppla all set to serve European projects

There’s a great need in European projects on ecosystem services and nature-based solutions for sharing good practice, working examples and quantifiable evidence. With the concept of nature-based solutions gaining increasing attention from policy, practice and research there’s a growing demand for interdisciplinary approaches and stakeholder engagement. This will support co-creation of solutions to offer multiple benefits to society. Rather than developing networking and knowledge-sharing platforms for each topic separately it is important to join forces and use existing platforms. Oppla is a key platform in this respect. Read more »

OpenNESS at the third EU business and biodiversity annual meeting

Businesses are making big steps in integrating biodiversity considerations into their strategies. Or better: integrating natural capital. This was the general feeling at the well-attended annual meeting of the EU B@B platform in The Hague. The OpenNESS work on natural capital and ecosystem services, and the many experiences from our case studies were welcomed by those participants visiting the OpenNESS poster at the event. Read more »

Photo: EC DG Research & Innovation Tiago Freitas recommends Oppla to 150 business representatives, © Ben Delbaere

OpenNESS represented in ESP Africa regional conference

OpenNESS was well represented at the first conference of the Regional Africa chapter of the ESP in Nairobi, Kenya from 21 to 25 November. Its consortium members presented two papers from the project. Firstly, Jan Dick presented the overall results from the stakeholder evaluation across the 27 case studies. Secondly, in partnership with John Ochieng of the Kenyan Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI), the results of the social media analysis of geo-tagged digital images that local people and visitors posted in the web-based platform Flickr were presented. Read more »

Photo: John Ochieng and Jan Dick presenting the case study brochure 'Ecosystem services in operation' to delegates at the ESP regional conference in Kenya. © Jan Dick

Blue-Green Factor Calculator app - now available for download on Android

The Blue-Green Factor (BGF) can now be implemented in an Android compatible app, downloadable from Playstore under “BGF calculator”. BGF Calculator lets you calculate the blue-green factor for a property using a method developed for Future Cities – Fremtidens Byer. The blue green factor is a measure of the quality of a property in terms of its green structures and surface water management.
Read more »

Users very enthusiastic about Oppla

During the final user board meeting of the OPERAs project lots of useful feedback was given on Oppla. A substantial proportion of the two-day meeting was devoted to the platform, a key synthesis product of OPERAs and OpenNESS. Countryscape’s Paul Mahony presented the current bèta version of Oppla and gave a sneak preview into development plans in the near future. This offered an excellent basis for an interactive session during which the 15 user board members tested Oppla and then provided feedback. Read more »

OpenNESS case studies to inspire European site managers

For many managers of nature sites around Europe, the concept of ecosystem services is relatively new and barely put in practice; or at least not consciously. During a full day seminar on ‘ecosystems at your service’ as part of the Eurosite annual member’s meeting, the participants learned about ecosystem services and how this can help in increasing support for their management and protection activities. For many it was an eye opener, making them realize that their sites and well-managed ecosystems have more to offer to society than they think. Read more »

Photo: © Eurosite

OpenNESS in ESP Regional Conference Latin America

Four scientists of the OpenNESS case study "Biofuel farming and restoration of natural vegetation in the Sao Paulo region" participated in the ESP Regional Conference Latin America that took place in Cali, Colombia from October 18th to 22th. David Lapola, Jörg »Priess, Gleiciani Roberto and Moara Teixeira all had oral presentations of different aspects of the Brazilian case study, which investigates the feasibility of a Payment for Ecosystems Services (PES) in a municipality within Brazil’s sugarcane belt. Read more »

Photo: the OpenNESS Brazilian case study team