First MEDfOR Winter School an international success
The MEDfOR Winter School, hosted by the University of Valladolid, brought students together from their consortium universities, providing them with the first opportunity to meet their peers in the inaugural year of this course, the first of its kind in Mediterranean forestry. Based around the theme “The asymmetric impact of Global Change on Mediterranean Forests”, the Winter School provided an integrated view of Mediterranean forestry, promoting communication and multidisciplinary exchange between students and their professors.
A significant practical component featured, with visits to the Urbion Model Forest, Research Forest Plot Network, Technologic Center of CESEFOR (Soria), a timber house in Revenga (Burgos) and Forest Classroom in Navaleno (Soria). Students had the opportunity to meet forest sector practitioners in situ during the various field visits. This gave them an insight into real forest management issues, developing their knowledge on practical methods for participatory and adaptive forest management, and allowing them to see how instruments for forest management planning are used in the field.
Photo: Mediterranean Model Forest Network
Mid-way through the Winter School, the first International Meeting of Mediterranean Forestry Researchers took place, which will become an annual event at the University of Valladolid. With a view to strengthening the links between MEDfOR and the Mediterranean forestry community, the meeting was attended by forest owners organisations, forest consulting firms, central and local public administrations, international organisations, forest industries, and local development organisations. Presentations were given by forest sector stakeholders and affiliated universities, with opportunities for internships described to students. In addition, a consultation panel meeting of MEDfOR consortium and affiliated universities and stakeholders took place, coordinated by EFIMED.
The MEDfOR students were joined by newly recruited young researchers from Morocco, supported by the EC-funded AGORA project, who were able to benefit from the valuable practical and field experience as well as participate in the educational seminars, building their capacity to apply theoretical knowledge to real case studies.
The Winter School was an international success, with attendance from students and young researchers from Italy, Spain, Portugal, Peru, Turkey, Argentina, Syria, Morocco, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Nepal, Eritrea, Ethiopia, USA, Tunisia, China, Pakistan, Lebanon and Macedonia.
29 students are enrolled in the inaugural two-year course in Mediterranean Forestry and Natural Resources Management, MEDfOR. This world-class Erasmus Mundus Masters course was established to address the lack of an international program in Mediterranean forestry and natural resources.
More information: MEDfOR website
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