Practice is a global initiative that gathers scientists and key-actors from some of the most affected regions of the world to collect scientific and local knowledge that raises awareness for the challenge of desertification.
This way, it is expected to learn from past and ongoing experiences and from the exchange of information generated.
PRACTICE involves research teams and platforms of key-actors in sites located in 12 countries. These sites, or monitoring places, are distributed by:
Portugal contributes to PRACTICE with the site: Special Protection Area (SPA) of Castro Verde birds, located in low Alentejo.
LPN is the Portuguese key partner of the project, coordinated by the CEAM foundation in Spain.
Desertification is an important socio-economic and environmental problem that affects a large part of the arid areas of the world, resulting in a significant loss of economic and biologic productivity.
Answering to desertification, improving the efficiency in resources and land management represents a crucial step to improve the social well-being of arid areas. In spite the remarkable scientific progress in understanding desertification’s causes and processes, the assessment of practices to tackle it is limited, as well as the exchange of experiences and knowledge and the incorporation of the social dimension in the solutions. This way, the adoption of the best practices in the recovery and prevention efforts may be compromised.
PRACTICE aims, first, to develop and apply participatory assessment tools to determine the effectiveness of recovery and prevention practices, integrating the human and biophysical dimensions of desertification and the involvement of key-actors at all levels.
This involvement includes farmers, landowners, natural resources managers, scientists and policy makers (national and international). The tools developed under the project have a high potential and may be applicable to other areas (with the necessary adaptations), other than just desertification.
Second, PRACTICE foresees the establishment of an international network of monitoring areas in the long term to favor knowledge exchange on successful practices to tackle desertification worldwide. It is thus intended to provide and improve access to data in the long term to allow research and analysis to be carried out, to find the best possible solutions to tackle desertification.
For each project site, the partner teams identify the site key-actors and the actions to tackle desertification that have been implemented in the field.
Actions are afterwards assessed through a protocol created specifically for this and that requires compliance with the following general activities:
The four plenary meetings that will also happen during the project in several of the participating countries (Spain, Italy, Portugal and South Africa) allow the presentation of the results of the work carried out in the several sites and the clarification of doubts by all the partners. These meetings constitute a wide debating place among scientists that interact with different land realities and different key-actors.
During the project, written and audiovisual materials are also prepared, documenting the results of the activities carried out and constitute a dissemination means of the project output to the scientific community and to the public in general. The following elements stand out:
The written and audiovisual materials that constitute the outputs of the project are available here (http://www.ceam.es/practice/)
Total cost: 1,109,720€
EC contribution: 976,963€
Duration: 36 months | Start date: 01/09/2009 End date: 31/08/2012
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