The Great Escarpment: Research horizons as far as the eye can see
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The Great Escarpment: Research horizons as far as the eye can see

The challenges and joys of hosting the World’s longest erosional orographic entity:  Southern Africa’s Great Escarpment Southern Africa’s Great Escarpment is the World’s longest erosional orographic entity. By erosional, I mean that it was formed mostly from erosion of pre-existing rocks and highlands into its current form rather than from orogenesis through folding, faulting or […]

Nepali villagers trapped by threat of glacier floods
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Nepali villagers trapped by threat of glacier floods

One month after the first of two major earthquakes in Nepal, 38 villages, 834 households and 4600 people continue to wait for substantial relief efforts and remain uncertain about the future. The first earthquake, which hit on April 25, severely damaged villages in Pharak, in the southern part of the Everest region in Nepal. When […]

Human-Nature Relationships and Governance in Mountain SESs
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Human-Nature Relationships and Governance in Mountain SESs

Funded by MRI and the Austrian Academy of Sciences, a workshop on Human-Nature Relationships and Governance in Mountain Social-Ecological Systems (SES) was held May 4-8, 2015 in the Lungau Biosphere Reserve in Austria. A diverse group of experts from various disciplines and regions of the world gathered to share ideas. Workshop details can be found […]

Latin America: A hidden (botanical) conquest
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Latin America: A hidden (botanical) conquest

This is the fascinating tale of how bilateral collaborations triggered by a global network help tackle a problem of continent-wide scale. Since the beginning of the European colonisation of the Americas more than five centuries ago, South America has seen an untold number of visitors coming from all corners of Europe. Underneath the radar of […]

That other alpine range in Europe…
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That other alpine range in Europe…

I finally made it to the Pyrenees! When one lives in the Swiss Alps, the logic of visiting that other alpine range in Europe is not blindingly obvious but, as Director of MRI, I thought that it was my duty to see what this other mountain range was all about. Besides the mountains themselves, I […]

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Mountains for Europe’s future: Horizon 2020

Lobbying for mountain research with the European funding agencies is one of the current projects of the CH-AT coordination office in Bern. In two meetings in Vienna and Bern, the core group of a “Mountain Research Advocacy Network” developed an ambitious plan for 2015. Austria and Switzerland as mountainous countries are spearheading the effort to […]

Toward integrative research in páramos
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Toward integrative research in páramos

Páramos are high elevation ecosystems (3000-4000 m a.s.l.) that develop above the tree line and below the perennial snow line. They are primarily comprised by grasslands and a series of wetlands, lakes, and small ponds. Water that originates from páramo ecosystems in the northern Andes sustains the socio-economic development of populations settled in their surroundings. […]

Elevation-dependent warming at EGU
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Elevation-dependent warming at EGU

As I’ve done for at least the last six years, I attended the EGU conference in Vienna just a few weeks ago. But unlike my other EGU experiences, I didn’t just give a talk or present a poster; I also led a splinter meeting (“Elevation-Dependent Warming: What’s Next?”) to brainstorm the strategic next steps of […]