Latest Highlights/News

The Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Network (BES-Net) invites you to submit good practices and success stories on pollinators, pollination and food security. Your stories will be reviewed and, once approved, shared on the BES-Net portal in a Good Practice Repository to become available in early 2018. In addition, select submissions may be included in upcoming BES-Net newsletters and in the BES-Net Pollinator Trialogue event-related documents to be released in early 2018. The authors will be mentioned as contributors in the publication. Please choose one or more following response options (solutions) to frame and write the story on your good practice:   Pesticides and their threat to pollination Examples of solutions include: Raise standards of risk assessment and regulations of pesticide use. Reduce usage, seek alternative forms for pest control (IPM), train farmers and land users in good practices. Adopt technologies to reduce spray drift and dust emission. Land use change and its harm to pollination Examples of solutions include: provide food and nesting resources for pollinators; manage or restore habitat patches; establish protected areas, increase habitat heterogeneity favoring diverse gardens and landscape. Intensive agricultural management and the danger to pollination Examples of solutions include: create patches of flower rich habitats, support organic farming, and strengthen existing diversified farming systems, rewards farmers for good practices. Genetically modified (GM) crops and their threat to pollination Examples of solutions include: raise standards of risk assessment for approval of GM crops and quantify the indirect and sub lethal effects of GM crops on pollinators Pathogens, pests and their threat to pollination Examples of solutions include: improve management of bee husbandry, better disease detection and treatment, breeding programmes for disease resistance, improve regulations for trade and mass breeding (nationally and internationally). Climate change and its relation to pollination Examples of solutions include: targeted habitat creation or restoration to manage refuges and connectivity and increase crop diversity (many of these are largely untested). Invasive alien species and the danger to pollination Examples of solutions include: policies and practices to prevent new invasions. Eradication after invasion is rarely successful and very costly. Eligibility: All individuals, communities and organizations are eligible and invited to this opportunity to submit their good practices.  Language:  The good practices can be submitted in English, Spanish and French.   Submission Guidelines: In order to submit your proposal, we invite you to please review these details on submission and use the Good Practice template available here. All submissions should be sent to Marta Panco at as word documents using the template provided.
The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity held a Regional Bio-Bridge Initiative Round Table for Africa, 7 - 9 November 2017, in Entebbe, Uganda. The Bio-Bridge Initiative was established during the twelfth meeting of the Conference of the Parties, or COP12, to CBD in 2014 to facilitate implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020. Anne Juepner, Manager of BES-Net Project and Director of UNDP GC-RED, attended this round table event virtually and shared insights on the potential areas of collaboration between BES-Net and the Bio-Bridge Initiative. See the Presentation about the BES-Net Project and for more information about the Round Table, go to  
The GBIF Secretariat has just invited the submission of initial concept notes for the Biodiversity Information Fund for Asia or BIFA programme, which funded by the Ministry of the Environment, Government of Japan. This call for proposals aims to address key challenges that GBIF nodes in Asia have identified in connection with the mobilization and use of biodiversity data in the region. The total potential funding assigned to this call is approximately €105,000, and applicants may request a maximum of €15,000 through BIFA for each project. Three types of grants are included in the call: BIFA collections data mobilization grants target Asia’s natural history collections, seeking to fill taxonomic and geographic gaps in freely accessible data relating to Asian biodiversity (open to any institutions based in Asia) BIFA ecological monitoring data mobilization grants target Asian biodiversity monitoring programmes and networks (open to any institutions based in Asia) BIFA portal support grants target activities by GBIF Participant nodes or groups of nodes in Asia to develop or upgrade national, regional or thematic biodiversity information web portals Concept notes must be submitted to the GBIF Secretariat by 20 December 2017. Read the call for proposals, learn more about the BIFA programme or contact the Secretariat with questions at  
From 13-16 March, 2018, the Blue Solutions Initiative will host a 3.5-day fair in Thailand to foster international knowledge exchange and to accelerate action towards combatting climate change in the marine and coastal realm in Southeast Asia.  Under the topic “Facing the rising tide: sustainable ways to combat climate change for resilient coastal communities and healthy marine ecosystems” practitioners can contribute specific challenges they face. The event will connect practitioners, policy makers and potential funders interested in supporting climate change initiatives to accelerate action and implementation.   We are currently reaching out to marine practitioners in Southeast Asia to call for specific climate change related challenge they face in the marine realm. We will then invite selected applicants, resource persons, solution providers and donors with the objective to accelerate the implementation of projects, to obtain support for new initiatives and to facilitate networking. The deadline for applications from marine practitioners (“solution seekers”) is November 19, 2017. Click here for more information about the Blue Solutions Fair 2018 or get in touch:!  
A new global project to help protect marine ecosystems from the negative effects of invasive aquatic species has been given the go-ahead for preparation. The GloFouling Partnerships project - a collaboration between the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) - will address the transfer of aquatic species through biofouling, in other words, the build-up of aquatic organisms on a ship’s underwater hull and structures. The project will focus on the implementation of the IMO Guidelines for the control and management of ships’ biofouling, which provide guidance on how biofouling should be controlled and managed to reduce the transfer of invasive aquatic species. Marine bio-invasions are the source of significant environmental and socioeconomic impacts that can affect fisheries, mariculture, coastal infrastructure and other development efforts, ultimately threatening livelihoods in coastal communities. The GloFouling project will build on the success of the GEF-UNDP-IMO GloBallast Partnerships project, which worked to build capacity to implement IMO’s Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention. The BWM treaty addresses the transfer of potentially invasive aquatic species in the ballast water of ships. The GloFouling Partnerships project concept was approved by the GEF Council in May 2017, with a total funding of US$6.9 million earmarked for implementation. The project is now going through a detailed preparation phase to be resubmitted to the GEF for endorsement before implementation can commence. The full name of the new project will be “Building Partnerships to Assist Developing Countries to Minimize the Impacts from Aquatic Biofouling” (GloFouling Partnerships). The GloFouling project preparation will be undertaken by the IMO Secretariat, which has invited interested Member States to inform the Secretariat of their intention to participate in the new project. Click here for more information about this project.  
The BiodivERsA partners are pleased to have recently joined BES-net in light of a wider approach to collaborate in support of international research and policy-making on biodiversity. BiodivERsA is a partnership of European programmers and funders of research on biodiversity and Nature-based Solutions in Europe. Building on a shared vision and strategy, BiodivERsA partners program joint calls for transdisciplinary research advancing science, society and policy. The partnership also develops a great diversity of activities ranging from research mapping and programming, to stakeholder engagement, dissemination of projects’ outputs and knowledge brokerage. BiodivERsA has collaborated with IPBES on several levels, with MEP members joining the Partnership’s Advisory Board, through contributions to the BiodivERsA Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda, and in proactively contributing knowledge to on-going IPBES assessments by means of syntheses and policy briefs. Furthermore, BiodivERsA partners have launched in October 2017 an international call for research proposals on biodiversity scenarios jointly with the Belmont Forum and the European Commission. This joint action was designed based on a number of identified gaps and priorities, including those pinpointed throughout the IPBES methodological assessment on the topic and will support research that is expected to generate additional new knowledge useful in the IPBES and BES-Net context.  
The Center for Development Research (ZEF) in Bonn (Germany) has recently initiated a 5-year research project on the sustainability of the “Bioeconomy” funded by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). The project STRIVE (Sustainable Trade and Innovation Transfer in the Bioeconomy) integrates multiple research disciplines to improve the knowledge base for the design of sustainable policies and investments in the Bioeconomy. For details, please visit: Bioeconomy is the part of the economy that relies on biological resources, products, and principles. It is a new field of research driven by diverse expectations about how bio-based innovation could contribute (or not) to sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Please support the project by providing approximately 5 minutes of your time to help obtain a representative overview of how experts around the world expect key dimensions of the Bioeconomy to affect selected SDG dimensions. To participate, click on link below and answer a brief set of questions focusing on your specific area of expertise:   ONLINE SURVEY The survey will be open until September 30th. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Lisa Biber-Freudenberger.  
PESC-4 was held 12-14 June 2017 in Vácrátót, Hungary. It was co-organised by the French Foundation for Research on Biodiversity (FRB), the Institute of Ecology and Botany of the Hungarian Centre for Ecological Research (MTA-ÖK) and the Network-Forum for Biodiversity Research Germany (NeFo), in collaboration with the IPBES technical support units (TSU) for capacity-building and for the assessment of biodiversity and ecosystem services in Europe and Central Asia, the Belgium Biodiversity Platform and the Swiss Biodiversity Forum. 60 participants coming from more than 30 countries gathered to learn more on the IPBES process and other regional initiatives building on IPBES work, such as BES-net upcoming trialogue for Eastern Europe. Government representatives attended a dialogue workshop with the authors of the assessment as part of the IPBES capacity-building programme, while the other stakeholders prepared a joint review of the technical chapters of the assessment, filling knowledge gaps when they could and suggesting ways to enhance the readability and policy-relevance of the assessment. Find out more about the meeting and its outcomes on the ECA network website.  
West African Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (WABES) is happy to announce the launch of its call for its MSc program in "Managing the Science-Policy Interface on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services for sustainable development in West Africa." The program is a 2-year interdisciplinary course designed to provide students with broad, high-quality information and skills needed to facilitate the operation of science-policy interfaces such as the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), as a means for achieving sustainable development goals in West Africa. It will take place in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire and address participants from all 15 West African ECOWAS countries. Click here for more information on the program or applying. Note that the deadline for applications is 31 August, 2017. WABES is an initiative to facilitate networking and capacity-building across West Africa and beyond to support the IPBES Work Programme, in particular its assessments. WABES is funded by the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB).  
The Belmont Forum and BiodivERsA are pleased to announce the launch of their joint call on the following theme: Scenarios of biodiversity and ecosystem services. The call is planned to be launched in October 2017, with a closing date in March 2018 (with the submission of a pre-registration in December 2017). The indicative global budget for this call is of more than 25 million euro. Scientific teams will be invited to form transnational research consortia with teams from minimum 3 countries participating in the call. Proposals have to be exclusively written in English. The research proposals will be evaluated across criteria of scientific excellence and policy/societal relevance/stakeholder engagement (for more information on stakeholder engagement in funded projects, please check the BiodivERsA Stakeholder Engagement Handbook). It is also expected that the international added value of the projects will be clearly demonstrated. At this stage, the following countries have expressed a preliminary interest to participate to the call: Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Ivory Coast, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United States. Austria, Belgium and Portugal are also likely to participate to the call (their participation still needs to be confirmed). The updated list of participating countries will be published on the Belmont Forum and BiodivERsA websites. We invite you to regularly consult the Belmont Forum and BiodivERsA websites, on which information on the call will be regularly updated.