We want you to know what is going on in the BOD, our meetings, our actions, members leaving, the new ones elected,... but text written in this blog cannot be taken an official position or statement of the Society for Conservation Biology. Probably it is not even an official statement of the section... as these need to be approved by the members.

Sunday, 7 December 2014




Log in to www.conbio.org and click the link to vote in the blue box on your member homepage. 

Please email info@conbio.org with any questions or concerns. 

Five board seats are open: President, President Elect, and three board member seats. The candidates are listed below. You can read more about the candidates on the voting page. 

Piero Visconti

President Elect:
Bengt Gunnar Jonsson

Board Members:
Stephanie Januchowski-Hartley
Guy Pe'er
Aidin Niamir
Stefan Schindler 

Copyright 2014 Society for Conservation Biology (SCB).

Monday, 1 December 2014

From different knowledge sytems to decision-making - congress report from Hungary

The 9th Hungarian Conference on Conservation Biology was held in Szeged between 20 and 23 November supported by the SCB Europe Section and the Hungarian Chapter. As the latest meeting of a 12-year-long congress series, this conference clearly showed some interesting and new approach and directions in conservation science in Hungary. As the first congress in Sopron (2002) covered topics from habitat management to species conservation issues, this 2,5 day-long meeting addressed among other issues the role of international conservation policies and processes (e.g. IPBES), the impacts of the EU CAP, the influence of post-normal attributes and the significance of other knowledge systems (e.g. traditional ecological knowledge) in facing conservation challenges. 

Diversity of topics and views and the increasing contribution of social scientists made this congress a progressive event with the aim to integrate different disciplines and perspectives.  Participants (more than 27o) came also from a diverse background - researchers, practitioners, national park staff, NGOs, students. 

T. Hartel at the opening talk

In his opening talk, SCB-ES Board member Tibor Hartel presented the outcomes of a complex study of socio-ecological-economical systems in Transsylvania. A rapidly changing socio-economic system with a shifting population, disappearing traditional land-use practices and a region facing the impacts of incoming CAP money and land-grabbing processes: what is the future vision for this area? This is one of the key question addressed by this transdisciplinary research.  

During the evenings round table discussions revolved around the concept of ecosystem services and its usability in conservation, bridging the gap between science and practice, wilderness areas and national park zones. Human population growth and the question of virtual and real field identification were also discussed during the evening meetings. Post-congress excursions visited the  Kiskunság National Park and the Körös-Maros National Park.

Since serious concerns have been raised by the conservation community due to the latest governmental measures, the Congress approved a statement advocating  for the integrity and autonomy of the conservation insitutions and national parks in Hungary. 

Friday, 14 November 2014

Call for Nominations for 2015 SCB Service Awards

Deadline to apply is 1 December 2015

SCB is accepting nominations now through 1 December for 2015 SCB Service Awards!
Award winners will be recognized in front of their peers at SCB's 2015 International Congress for Conservation Biology and European Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB-ECCB) in Montpellier, France (2-6 August 2015).

From early career scientists to well-known conservationists, SCB Service Awards honor those whose commitment to conservation inspires others to succeed and whose outstanding achievements in the field contribute to lasting conservation success.

Past winners include Al Gore, Georgina Mace, David Attenborough, Phoebe Barnard, Eleanor Sterling and dozens of others who have made extraordinary contributions to conservation biology and the preservation of Earth's biodiversity. 

SCB will recognize winners from the following award categories at ICCB-ECCB 2015:

    Edward T. La Roe III Memorial Award (one winner)
    Distinguished Service Awards
    Early Career Conservationist Awards

Learn about each award type and submit your nomination(s) on the SCB 2015 Service Awards page of the SCB website. Non members are eligible to win an award, but you must be a member to make a nomination. Self-nominations are accepted. All nominations must include at least two letters of support.

Questions? E-mail Awards Committee Chair Carolyn Lundquist

SCB President Rodrigo Medellin presents Eleanor Sterling, (top left), James Watson (top right), Lucas Joppa (bottom left) and Bill Sutherland with SCB Service Awards at ICCB 2013 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014


Nominations for the next Board of Directors elections including election of President and President Elect has already started. 
Submit your candidate now!

Dear SCB Europe Section Member,     
The deadline to submit nominations for the next Board of Directors (BOD) elections for the Society for Conservation Biology – Europe Section is fast approaching. Please submit nominations by Friday 31 October. We have five seats that will be opening:     

We need candidates that are willing and capable to allocate time to the work on the SCB-ES Board. We do not need candidates unwilling to take on SCB-ES tasks on top of their usual workload.
Board Members’ duties include active input to BoD activities and the willingness to chair one of our standing committees.  We particularly seek for persons interested in conservation education and/or policy. BoD activities also include travel to two BoD meetings per year somewhere in Europe usually in February and October.  

The President-Elect shall closely cooperate with the president in section activities, and perform the duties of the President when the latter is absent. Term of office for the President-Elect shall be 3 years followed by 3 years as President.

The President's responsibility is to maintain and improve the visibility and activity of the Section in accordance with SCB strategic foci. The President shall organize and preside over meetings and mailings (including electronic mailings) intended to substitute for meetings, and shall serve as the Section’s voting representative on the Society’s Board of Governors.

If you know of anyone who would be a good candidate for these slots (including YOURSELF; self-nominations are quite common) please submit this SCB Europe Section Call for Board Nominations 

Form by e-mail to:    
Edina Mozes 
SCB-Europe coordinator 
In subject indicate EXACTLY to facilitate my work:     
"SCB-ES Elections"

E-mail address: europe@conbio.org

The deadline for nominations is 31 October 2014.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Short report on IPBES events, in conjunction with SCB and ICCB-ECCB 2015

IPBES, the Intergovernmental Science-policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services is a major initiative of governments to copy the success of IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change) in the topics of biodiversity and ecosystem services. These are in the focus of conservation biology, and of SCB as well. Our society was involved into the development of IPBES from the very beginning, and still active stakeholder to IPBES. After more than a year of development IPBES get to more visible activities, like the recent meetings on “Guide on production and integration of assessments from and across all scales”, and the “Regional scoping for a set of regional and subregional assessments”. Both deliverables had meeting in Paris, 13-16 August for the Guide, and 17-22 August for the Regional scoping. The Regional scoping is of extreme importance for the academic and non-academic communities, as it defines what regional assessments will be, which are the regions, what are the major policy questions to be addressed, etc. Nearly a hundred experts were involved into the scoping meeting, and many hundreds from around the globe will work in the assessments, including natural and social scientists, and indigeneous and local knowledge holders.

At the recent meeting Piero Visconti, co-chair of ICCB-ECCB 2015 Scientific Committee, Georgina Mace SCB past president and myself SCB-Europe president were invited to the scoping meeting in Paris. In addition, Salvatore Arico from the host organisation (UNESCO), past board member of SCB-Europe was present. Piero and myself initiated discussions with a number of experts about ICCB. We beleive that ICCB can be the best forum to present the first outputs of IPBES to the wide conservation community of c. 2000 participants in Montpellier. Anne Larigauderie, IPBES executive secretary, will give a plenary talk at the congress, and other activities on IPBES are also under planning.

Be prepared – ICCB-ECCB 2015 is approaching! 
Call for symposia is out (http://iccb-eccb2015.org/).

ICCB-ECCB 2015 poster presented at IPBES meeting, with Anne and myself.
András Báldi

Monday, 22 September 2014

Capercaillie, Banya and hot discussions: The Board goes north-east.

Lake Ladoga, Russia: Leaving from the big city of St. Petersburg, it takes only 5 hours (including 2 hours traffic jams) to reach the taiga and the largest lake in Europe, holding 1% of the world’s freshwater. Few wooden huts, simple-style toilet and a small Russian sauna („Banya“) served the perfect settings for our board meeting. The Board has now covered its most significant proportion of geographic Europe, from Portugal (Francisco) to St. Petersburg (Rustam, hosting  the meeting) – an aerial distance of 3600 km. It also included Edina, our new coordinator (who will introduce herself officially in the next blog entry).

Following the tradition, our meeting opened with a symposium at the University of St. Petersburg, jointly organised by the university, the regional NGO Baltic Fund for Nature, and SCB. It comprised  two presentations by Russian conservationists, and several introductory contributions by the Europe Section on how SCB works, what it does and a collection of main issues on our agenda at the regional, national, and international levels (e.g. CAP, IPBES, roadless areas). The venue – a spectacular Rococo-style room within a 400m-long corridor, added a particular historical aura to the event: A man-size golden clock took the elegant, luxurious Tsar way of reminding the speakers to keep to their time slots.

Having our Board meeting in Russia is indeed a historical event for the Society: An important strategic aim was to strengthen the links between East and West, improve the integration of Russian researchers and students in the SCB community, and, overall, draw greater attention to the Greater Europe in the Section’s agenda.
To experience wilderness and near-roadless areas, we travelled into the taiga and visited the beaches of Lake Ladoga and a bird-ringing station in the strictly protected, Nizhne-Svirsky Nature Reserve, encompassing an area of 41,000 ha. A travel on a narrow road (video taken by Francisco will come soon, to demonstrate how shaky it was ;-)) gave us the opportunity to watch several capercaillies, millions of mushrooms, and several spots of beaver activity. Finally, at the sandy shores of the (sadly over-fished and still-too-polluted) lake, we came to a crossroads: Where a small stream ends at the waters, animals have to pass as well. There we found the footsteps of elks, wild boars, wolves, raccoon dog and a bear. A crossroads also for us: here we shared a glass of champagne (actually plastic cups) with our András to commemorate 12 years of service to the SCB on his last board meeting.

Back at the beautifully simple venue, an attentive crew allowed us to maximise the time allocated for intense discussions. Issues of particular importance in our Board meeting involved membership and involvement: how can we improve participation of students, and better serve their wishes and needs? Can we facilitate the creation of new, vivid Chapters that would support local themes? And how can we improve communication – especially toward ICCB-ECCB? Other thematically important issues were wilderness, roadless areas and EU policy (e.g. the CAP).

We are indebted to Rustam (Board member and Director of the Baltic Fund for Nature), his assistant Tanya and the team at the reserve for making the visit of the Society in “true” eastern Europe so smooth.

For more information on issues such as the ICCB-ECCB, Šumava and the Common Agricultural Policy, and to know more about our Edina, our new coordinator, please await the next blog entries over the coming days.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Submit your proposal and present your topic at the most important Conference in Conservation Biology!

The 27th International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB) and the 4th European Congress for Conservation Biology (ECCB) take place in August 2-6 2015, in Montpellier, France.
It is time to submit your proposal for Symposia, Thematic Poster Exhibitions, Workshops, Round Table Discussions or Training Course. 

The central theme of the congress will be “Mission biodiversity: choosing new paths for conservation”. Accordingly, we envision ICCB-ECCB 2015 to be a truly interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary meeting, where delegates and students attend from as broad a range of professions and sectors as possible.

So, please feel free to distribute the call for Symposia, Workshops, Thematic Poster Exhibitions, Round Table Discussions and Training Course to colleagues and friends – including non-biologists e.g. Social scientists, Environmental Psychologists and Economics, Educators, members of interested NGOs – let’s make the upcoming ICCB-ECCB a place for a true dialogue.

We are also building a team to organize a range of exciting social events at the conference – parties, art, open spaces for a dialogue. Are you in? If so, click on ICCB-ECCB-social and write to us!

Deadline for submission is 31st October 2014. Notification of the results will be given prior to December 1st 2014. 

Click here for more information about the submission and ICCB-ECCB 2015.