Call for synthesis applications on scenarios and models as decision support to achieve the Environmental Quality Objectives on biodiversity The Swedish EPA aims to fund a synthesis analysis on scenarios and models as decision support to achieve the Environmental Quality Objectives on biodiversity. The last application day is the 15th of August 2017. Share Contact Listen With this call the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (The Swedish EPA) and the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (SwAM) are aiming to fund a synthesis analysis that explains how scenarios and their underlying models can be used as decision support in the work with the Environmental Quality Objectives regarding biodiversity. The work with the report includes an overview of the existing dynamic modelling tools used for the creation of scenarios linked to biodiversity. Possibilities and limitations of the scenarios should be clarified, as well as how different scenarios could be compared. The aim is to in a pedagogical way provide an increased understanding of how scenarios can serve as decision support. The target groups are governmental officials in the environmental field, such as government agencies, county administrative boards and municipalities. Representatives for these target groups should be involved continuously as the work progresses. The Swedish EPA invites organizations, individual researchers or research groups to submit applications for the synthesis analysis in the order of up to SEK 1.5 million (including overhead costs) for a period of 18 months. Only one application will be funded. We encourage researchers from different disciplines to work together. The deadline for applications is the 15th of August 2017. Challenges in environmental management Fourteen of our sixteen Environmental Quality Objectives [1,2] are not deemed to be achievable by 2020 with the current policy instruments and measures. In order to achieve the objectives the ecosystem management of landscapes require a more holistic approach. Today there are many relevant scenario analysis and modelling tools for both natural and socio-economic issues, see for example [3,4,5]. Most of these tools are focused on specific areas, but much of today's development is moving towards the integration of natural and socio-economic models to achieve a better understanding of complex issues. In 2015 The Swedish EPA funded a synthesis analysis about scenarios in landscape design from an international perspective . There is a need for further clarifications of the tools mentioned above before they can to serve as a basis and support for decisions, for example in the evaluation of different policy instruments. This is because it is currently a challenge for decision makers to understand, compare and / or use scenarios and their underlying models for a specific management issue. How can the use of scenarios in landscape management relate to the degree of complexity of the model, the degree of uncertainty in the interpretation of model results, the spatial and temporal scale analysis, as well as assumptions, simplifications and weaknesses due to lack of data? This call aims to address these questions. The Swedish EPA and SwAM expect to benefit from the results of this synthesis analysis in the work with the Environmental Quality Objectives regarding biodiversity, especially A Rich Diversity of Plant and Animal Life and A Balanced Marine Environment, Flourishing Coastal Areas and Archipelagos. Priorities The synthesis analysis should result in a report on scenarios and models as decision support in the work with the Environmental Quality Objectives regarding biodiversity. Scenarios with relevance for the Nordic countries shall be given priority. The focus should be on the scenarios, and their underlying models, that have applied interdisciplinary integration. With interdisciplinary integration is meant that the functions and processes of the ecosystems have been linked to for example changes in economic, legal, social and/or cultural processes. The overview should be based on scientific articles as well as grey literature and case studies. The report shall include an analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of the presented scenarios and models, the context in which they are most relevant, how adaptable they are, and how they can become more transparent. The following aspects should be explained: Degree of interdisciplinary integration Decision support in the form of various types of scenario analysis, optimized scenarios, extreme scenarios, including cumulative effects Underlying data and lack of data Handling of uncertainties and sensitivity in the validation of scenarios Management and integration of spatial and temporal scales Uncertainty assessment of the modelling tools The future trend regarding decision support and modelling tools ("anticipatory governance") The synthesis work should be presented in a pedagogically written report, as well as in a seminar aimed at target groups. The results should also be resented on an interactive webpage. The seminar will be organized by the Swedish EPA and SwAM in collaboration with the project group. The main target groups are those involved in environmental management, for example: Government agencies who work to achieve the Environmental Quality Objectives County administrative boards Municipalities Who can apply? The main applicant must hold a PhD and conduct research at university, college, research institute, or at a government agency carrying out research as part of their mandate. "Research institute" refers to organizations that have research as their sole or principal part of their mandate. The main applicant must be affiliated with a Swedish organization with a Swedish corporate identity number ("organisationsnummer"). How to apply Writing a synthesis application Application portal Timeline for the call 15th of August 2017: Deadline for applications 1st of November 2017: Decision on financing 1st of December 2017: Project starts Responsible officer Cecilia LindbladE-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgTelephone: 010-698 12 95 Definitions Definitions of the terms "models" and "scenarios" from: The methodological assessment report on scenarios and models of biodiversity and ecosystem services. IPBES rapport 2016. Glossary annex I s. 293 "Models: Qualitative or quantitative representations of key components of asystem and of relationships between these components." "Scenarios: Representations of possible futures for one or more components of a system, particularly, in this assessment, for drivers of change in nature and nature's benefits, including alternative policy or management options." References Det svenska miljömålssystemet. Mål i sikte. Analys och bedömning av de 16 miljökvalitetsmålen i fördjupad utvärdering. Volym 2 Rapport 6662, Naturvårdsverket, 2015. The Baltic Sea –Our Common Treasure. Baltic Stern rapport 4, 2013. The methodological assessment report of scenarios and models of biodiversity and ecosystem services, IPBES 2016, ISBN: 978-92-807-3569-7 Final report of the NOR project "Management of reindeer pastures under uncertainty" Report title: "A decision-tool for adaptation of reindeer herds to rangeland: the user's manual". A Review on the State of the Art in Scenario Modelling for Environmental Management. Naturvårdsverket rapport, 2016.