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Goal 4+: Eco-cultural Pluralism in Quality Education in Ecuadorian Amazonia

Project date Head of research Language
Summary
Access to schooling and higher education are considered as primary means to empower marginalized groups and enhance sustainable development in the Global South. In Ecuador the intercultural bilingual education programme that affirmed the fundamental importance of integrating diverse local languages knowledges and pedagogical practices in education was established already in and later amended based on the community-centric ecologically-balanced and culturally-sensitive philosophy of sumakkawsay (buenvivir). However the programme is still only partially applied and thus education typically follows homogenized standards and fails to include specific cultural realities.
Team
Johanna Hohenthal

Regional Andean Programme to Enhance Weather, Water and Climate Services and Development (PRASDES)

Project date Head of research Language
Summary
The PRASDES Project develops sustainable services in the four participating National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs) in the following five areas: 1. Weather, climate and hydrology data management systems 2. Climate and Water services production systems 3. Hydrological services production systems 4. Information and Communication systems 5. Financial sustainability of services

Providing tools for the use of indicator species in forest inventories in Amazonia

Project date Head of research Language
Summary
Because of the huge species diversity of Amazonian forests, it has been difficult to obtain a general idea of their environmental and floristic variation among sites. This makes it difficult to allocate suitable land uses to areas with different productivity, to adapt the management systems to local ecological conditions, and to identify habitats of high conservation value. Understorey plants (such as pteridophytes) can be used as indicators to rapidly and at relatively low cost evaluate the ecological conditions and species composition of a given rain forest site. The present project will design a species identification tool that conveys to the users of the indicator species approach 1) the knowledge on how to identify the indicator species, and 2) the information on what kind of environment or forest each species indicates. In order to be useful for people who are not plant specialists, the identification tool will be interactive, easy to use, free of botanical jargon, richly illustrated and freely available on the internet.
Team
Hanna Tuomisto, Gabriela Zuquim, Glenda Cárdenas

Mapping Amazonian biodiversity at multiple scales by integrating geology and ecology

Project date Head of research Language
Summary
Estimating how well existing conservation units represent different habitats and their species is necessary for the long-term preservation of biological diversity and for sustainable use of forest resources. The task is especially challenging in Amazonia, which is both extensive and largely unexplored. Therefore, exact enough maps of the distribution of biodiversity are not available. We aim to solve the problem by combining the efforts of two teams that have approached biodiversity-related questions from different points of view. Attention will be given both to the current distribution of biodiversity in Amazonia and to the geological history that has shaped it. This will invove a combination of novel remote sensing methods, exceptionally extensive and internally consistent field data, and a thorough understanding of the geology of the Amazon basin and the ecology of selected indicator plants.
Team
Hanna Tuomisto, Kalle Ruokolainen, Samuli Lehtonen, Jasper Van doninck, Gabriela Zuquim, Gabriel Moulatlet, Glenda Cárdenas

Owl biodiversity and possible new owl species in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru

Project date Head of research Language
Summary
This multinational research team wants to identify so far unknown (mystery) owl species recently seen and photographed in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. Identification will use genetic sampling and voice recordings which will be compared with several museum skins and blood samples in the UK, US and The Netherlands in addition to owls in the number of university collections in South America. After the owls are correctly identified it is easier to secure their better conservation and to study the needs for biodiversity sustainablity in their vulnerable forest habitats.
Team
Dr. Elisa Bonaccorso, Mr. Juan Freile Ortiz and Mitch Lysinger