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21-23 MARCH 2017

Final OpenNESS Annual Meeting in Smolenice, Slovakia

OpenNESS and Oppla heavily featured during Green Week

‘Nature – our health, our wealth’ was the theme of this year’s EU Green week – plenty of reason, therefore, for OpenNESS to participate in this annual large-scale environmental conference in Brussels.

OpenNESS contributed to the conference by presenting and promoting its work in an exhibition stand on nature-based solutions, biodiversity and climate change. The stand was organized by the EC Directorate-General for Research and Innovation and brought together four related research projects: OpenNESS, its twin project OPERAs, the freshwater biodiversity project BioFresh, and LUC4C on land use and climate change. The stand attracted a lot of interest from the hundreds of event participants, including business, research, policy, and NGOs.

In addition to the stand, Oppla was also promoted, the knowledge-sharing platform jointly developed by OpenNESS and OPERAs. ‘Oppla agents’ cruised the conference venue, proactively raising awareness and attracting the involvement of many of the participants. Especially for the Green Week, an extended temporary Oppla webpage - or splash page - was created. This page provides visitors with an infographic as well as some FAQs about Oppla. Visitors are also invited to help develop Oppla and give their input, or join the ‘Ask Oppla’ community and register as a contributing expert.

Go to the Oppla splash page »

Next to all this, the OpenNESS QUICKScan team, which supports the mapping of ecosystem services in some case studies, was invited by DG Environment to demonstrate the tool in the MAES stand (shared with JRC and EEA) as a follow up of the successful hands-on workshops to train Member States to map ecosystem services.

And finally, OpenNESS urban case studies with two mobile phone applications to 1. gather ecosystem services-related knowledge from citizens (developed by UFZ, Germany) and to 2. raise awareness by letting people map their activities in various kinds of urban blue-green structures (developed by NINA, Norway) were presented in a joint stand entitled 'Innovating cities with nature' organized by the EC. Neither of the applications have yet been published and the aim was to present them and gather feedback from the participants in the Green Week. Both applications as well as the OpenNESS urban case studies were also presented on posters. The urban cases stand attracted a lot of visitors and people were excited to try the applications on their own.

Photo (above): Oppla agent on the job in the EC nature-based solutions stand, © Ben Delbaere
Photo (centre): Richard Lochhead, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Moray & Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs in the Scottish Government, visits the OpenNESS stand

Photo (below): Arto Viinikka in the 'Innovating cities with nature' stand