A four year project funded through the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme operating from 2010 to 2014
The overall objective of the BioFresh project is to improve capacity to protect and manage freshwater biodiversity in the face of ongoing changes to the global climate and socioeconomic conditions. It will achieve this by building a freshwater biodiversity information platform, to bring together and make publicly available, the vast amount of information currently scattered among a wide range of databases. Rather than the collection of new observations and measurements, BioFresh will use existing data to build predictive models of biodiversity change at local, European and global scales, in order to support a broad diversity of critical needs in freshwater biodiversity management and conservation.
Using data to research past and present impacts of multiple stressors, including their interactions, the project will significantly improve our ability to predict future responses of biodiversity and its services to changing pressures. Beyond the building of the information portal, this collaborative effort will bring together a diverse database which has the potential to deliver new insights to the benefit of freshwater biodiversity management and conservation, as well as raising awareness of its importance.
The project is a collaborative effort led by FORSCHUNGSVERBUND BERLIN E.V. with 19 international partner organisations. IUCN Species Programme is participating in this project as a partner. The project is divided into three tightly interacting Workblocks (WB1-3) and nine integrated Workpackages (WP0-8) on which different partners take the lead. WB1, the database workblock, includes WPs1-3. WB2, the science workblock, includes WPs4-6, while WB3, including WPs7-8, is concerned with policy and outreach activities. IUCN Species is leading on WP7 which will inform conservation planning for freshwater biodiversity through the provision of baseline data of the status and distribution of freshwater species as a basis for long-term monitoring and identification of important sites of freshwater biodiversity. IUCN Species will also evaluate the efficacy of existing Protected Areas for freshwater biodiversity and develop scenarios for future protected area networks.
Ultimately, the datasets, together with geospatial visualisation tools and predictive models, will be made freely accessible through the web portal forming a hub of global information for all stakeholders in freshwater biodiversity.
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