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Biodiversa+ launched a call for transnational proposal on biodiversity monitoring

European Union, 2020 / Photographer: Xavier LejeuneThe European Biodiversity Partnership, Biodiversa+, announced the opening of the BiodivMon Call for Transnational Research Proposal on “Improved transnational monitoring of biodiversity and ecosystem change for science and society”.

As part of the European research and innovation program "Horizon Europe," Biodiversa+, the co-funded European Partnership for Biodiversity Research, Ecosystem Protection and the Adoption of Nature-based Solutions, kicked off on October 1, 2021. It's an initiative supporting excellent research on biodiversity with an impact for policy and society, and it was jointly developed between Biodiversa and the European Commission, DG Research and Innovation and the DG Environment.

Biodiversa+ coordinates research programs from the EU and 37 European states, mobilizing key environmental authorities, European ministries of research and funding institutions, and environmental protection agencies as key partners in implementing biodiversity research and innovation. All Biodiversa+ objectives and activities are aligned with the new policy context as it is aligned with the EU biodiversity strategy with the general objective of making the bridge between science policy and practice.

Biodiversa+ has five general objectives:

  • to improve monitoring of biodiversity and ecosystem services across Europe (status and trends);
  • generate usable knowledge to address direct and indirect drivers of biodiversity loss;
  • broaden and improve the knowledge base and accelerate the development and wide deployment of NbS to address societal challenges across Europe;
  • make the conservation and restoration of biodiversity economically viable and affordable;
  • ensure efficient scientific support for biodiversity policy-making in Europe.

The Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) adopted by Biodiversa+, for the seven-year period 2022-2028, includes six co-funded calls for research projects, with a value of about 40 million euros each, which will enable to implement a very large portfolio of activities going from supporting research and innovation programs that will:

  • support biodiversity monitoring across Europe;
  • support nature based deployment of nature based solutions and evaluation of biodiversity in the private sector;
  • better connect research innovation projects and programs to policy;
  • contribute to the internationalization of European Research and Innovation;
  • promote stakeholder engagement in research;
  • develop a common vision and strategy for all members;
  • support activities related to communication outreach and open science.

As recent assessments and literature reviews have reveal that information on biodiversity trends is often biased towards some taxonomic groups, environments, regions, parts of the world and also within countries in Europe, and that there are differences in coverage, it has become clear that there is much that remains to be studied, and that monitoring networks that do exist need to be harmonized. Under the call "Improved transnational monitoring of biodiversity and ecosystem change for science and society", applicants are invited to submit 3-years duration project proposals covering one or more of the three (non-exclusive) themes described below:

  • THEME 1: Innovation and harmonization of methods and tools for collection and management of biodiversity monitoring data;
  • THEME 2: Addressing knowledge gaps on biodiversity status, dynamics, and trends to reverse biodiversity loss;
  • THEME 3: Making use of available biodiversity monitoring data.

So the projects should have an overall focus on improving knowledge on species distribution and abundance, should contribute to refining and upscaling existing methods, developing testing, applying evaluating new methods to understand and characterize biodiversity, its status dynamics and trends. Projects should also develop tools to better implement and harmonized monitoring schemes across countries and across regions, and they should also show the power of new and existing monitoring information to inform policies and management.

All environments (terrestrial, inland freshwater including wetlands, and marine environments) are eligible.

The call has a two-stage project proposal submission process with a closing date for preliminary proposals (pre-proposal) on the 9th of November 2022. Consortia that have passed the first stage of pre-proposal evaluation will be invited by the Call Secretariat to submit full proposals (full proposals) with a closing date on the 5th of April 2023.

Research proposals will be evaluated across the following criteria:

  • Step 1 (pre-proposal stage): Fit to the scope of the call, novelty of the research and impact;
  • Step 2 (full proposal stage): (Scientific) Excellence, quality and efficiency of the implementation and impact (including expected policy and/or societal impact and approach to stakeholder engagement).

Finally, to be eligible, research consortia must include partners from a minimum of 3 countries (with a minimum of two from EU member states or EU-associated countries).

The success rates at Biodiversa+ call is around 15% and it hopes to fund around 30 or more projects per call. The call coverage is global, so projects (even though Biodiversa has primarily European funders) could have funders outside of Europe. There may be specific limitations for some funders when it comes to regions to work in but, as a whole the call covers all areas, all regions of the world.

In general Biodiversa+ calls will have different topics. In fact the partnership launched already two calls: one on biodiversity protection, and one on biodiversity monitoring. But Biodeversa+ is launching also two new flagships this year, one on nature based solutions and one on societal transformation. There is no rules that will prevent from applying to the call even if applicants have already projects funded in the Biodiversa+.

Documents:

Eligibility Criteria

Call Documents