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Socio-ecological research in the Cairngorms

The LTER community is well-placed to conduct socio-ecological research according to Dr Jan Dick, site coordinator at the Cairngorms ECN site.

Jan recently attended the International Long Term Ecological Research (ILTER) annual meeting in Portugal where she presented recent socio-ecological work in the Cairngorms.

During the poster session she explained the work done at the science-society interface at the site and in the surrounding area. The Eco-SEE project, which involved surveying over 300 residents and visitors designed to gauge their personal perception of the environment and the ecosystem services it delivers, is currently being compared to similar studies in Israel and Russia.

The work was part-funded by the EU project INTERACT, in which Jan is participating. INTERACT runs a very successful Transnational Access (TA) scheme providing funds for short research visits to northern latitude research stations (including the ECN Cairngorms). INTERACT has just opened its latest TA call, which will fund research trips during summer 2013 and winter 2013/2014. The closing date is 31 October 2012.

Jan's poster concluded that "The LTER community is well-placed to conduct socio-ecological research as many sites are developing as LTSER [Long-Term Socio-Ecological Research] platforms which integrate the LTER sites into a larger social context. In addition managers are familiar with their local environment, they have a wealth of relevant data and cross country collaboration is fostered both by donor grants (e.g. INTERACT) and international networks (e.g. LTER-Europe and ILTER)."

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