Salford academics talk urban ecology at major conference

Tuesday 10 September 2013

The University of Salford is running a symposium at a major conference to discuss how ecology improves the lives of people living in towns and cities.


The event on Wednesday is part of the  Landscape Ecology European Congress 2013 held this week in Manchester and draws upon the expertise of scientists from the School of Environment & Life Sciences to discuss new ways of viewing landscape ecological processes both within and outside urban areas. It will draw attention to the dynamics of urban areas and to the ecology of towns and cities.

For one week in September, scientists, policymakers, businesses and communities are coming together to develop new ideas for managing our changing landscapes. Over 300 delegates - travelling from as far afield as China, Australia, the US and across Europe - will pool knowledge and expertise from a diversity of disciplines to develop fresh solutions to some of the most pressing environmental challenges of our time.

The event, hosted by the International Association for Landscape Ecology, is the first ever congress of its kind to be held in the UK, uniting people from diverse backgrounds including social science, community planning, biodiversity and genetics. This major international event will examine how and why European landscapes are changing and how we can plan for the future, not only within Europe, but around the world.

Both local projects and international programmes will be put under the spotlight, so that practical lessons can be learned and shared between nations.

Salford’s event is being hosted by Professor Philip James, alongside postgraduate students Oliver Bishop and Matthew Dennis.

The Congress features a dedicated Greater Manchester Landscapes symposium, during which delegates will interact with community groups and cutting edge landscape projects from across the host city. It also features a wide range of field trips showcasing innovative projects in and around Manchester, while demonstrating best practice in environmental responsibility (all visits are being organised using public transport, with a focus on local suppliers and produce).

The event will culminate with delegates developing recommendations and a landscape ecology plan to improve Greater Manchester - a gift to the host city from some of the brightest minds in Europe and around the world.

The Congress commenced on Monday 9 September with a welcoming address from Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council and plenary lecture by John Handley, Professor Emeritus at The University of Manchester. It runs until Thursday 12 with a post-conference excursion to the Peak District National Park on Friday 13.

The event is being hosted by ialeUK and IALE-Europe, the national and European chapters of the International Association for Landscape Ecology. It is being organised by Countryscape, a Manchester based company that works at the forefront of landscape ecology.

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