EVOLTREE: Another 4-year period approved, with a focus on the enrolment of young researchers and our increased visibility
EVOLTREE Network members met in Alghero (Italy) from 25-27 September for the organization of its 2017 Governing Board
Present members agreed on a positive assessment of the network’s activities and achievements in the previous period and discussed new objectives and initiatives for the next four-year phase 2019-2022. EVOLTREE also co-organized two side events in the framework of the European Forest Institute (EFI) Annual Meeting.
The members who attended the Governing Board agreed on the continuation of the network – as well as the continuation of INRA as Coordinator and EFI as administrative coordinator – after quantifying the value of the network since its inception and putting new initiatives and perspectives on the table for the next period. Among the main ideas addressed was the continuing of courses and topics developed until date, putting the focus on students and continuing to support them with grants offered by the programme; making the network more visible and transparent if possible, focusing on the amplification of the communication.
In parallel, in the Sardinian city the EVOLTREE community also organised two events together with the EFI Mediterranean Facility (EFIMED) and the European Forest Genetic Resources Programme (EUFORGEN) within the framework of the EFI Annual Meeting.
In the first – ‘Research that matters: applying tree genomics to sustainable development’ – which focused on how low-input tree breeding and genomics can help achieve Sustainable Development Goals and new science needed to preserve orphan species before they disappear, participants discussed the topics using a fishbowl format. The key conclusions will serve as basis for an opinion paper.
The second – a scientific seminar ‘Roots to riches Genetics & products of stone pine & Mediterranean oaks’ was a unique opportunity for participants to explore key Mediterranean tree species such as stone pine and cork oak, and the role of Mediterranean oaks in the forest-based bio economy. Among the principle conclusions drawn during the seminar was the need to further research genetics of cork quality and to improve understanding of genotype for environment interaction, as well as the need to focus on high-value ecosystem products & services.
All in all, a very successful forum week for the network, which continues its efforts to develop networking initiatives and research projects for the promotion of forest ecosystems genomics.
Photo: Marta Briones, EFI