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WP5 Description of work


Task 5.1: Project web site

Creation of a project-based web site and development of links with existing web sites and electronic networks to allow rapid exchange of information and ideas to researchers and end-users. The website will be used to publish, each 6 months, information newsletters that will provide up-to-date information on the scientific results emerging from the project, their policy relevance, and how they can be used and adapted to other mountain regions of the world. The ACQWA home page will be advertised on the websites of other relevant EU projects, academic institutions, governmental agencies and NGOs in order to ensure a maximum of visibility of, and information flow from, the ACQWA project.

Task 5.2: Workshop organization

Organisation of ACQWA-sponsored workshops for scientists working on climate change and water in general or participating in the project in particular. In addition, organisation of ACQWA-sponsored sessions at international conferences such as EGU, AGU or IAHS. Organisation of a final workshop involving scientists, stakeholders and other end-users involved in or bounded by the problems addressed by ACQWA (e.g., architects, engineers, experts on energy-savings in constructions, environmental lawyers, etc). Individual partners will be expected to organize general-public conferences to raise public awareness to local, regional and Europe-wide issues of water in vulnerable mountain regions. A general-public event will be organized towards the end of the project, with stakeholder involvement.

Task 5.3: Young scientist mobility programme

Exchange scholarships for PhD students and post-docs working within the network. Some seed money will be made available in order to enable young scientists to spend a sho rt period in another partner institution. A small committee will be set up to evaluate the requests for entering into the mobility programme that will be advertised once a year.

Task 5.4: Dissemination to policymakers

This task will be devoted to the following points:

- A final report providing the essential details of the ACQWA Project results, a discussion of the methodologies and models used, and the possibilities and limits of applications of ACQWA developments to other mountain regions of the world. It is important that the momentum generated during the five years of the project be put to good use to other regions facing similar resource problems and vulnerabilities.

- A summary for policymakers: this document is similar in its concept to the philosophy developed by the IPCC to condense the information contained in the detailed reports. The ACQWA summary for policymakers will provide a short comprehensive overview of the most important conclusions of the ACQWA Project and the policy-relevant issues and solutions. The document will be circulated via the ACQWA policy+stakeholder interface (see the next point below).

- An important step in the transfer of research results to adaptation/policy will be the development of an ACQWA policy+stakeholder interface. While the project will complete its work with targeted stakeholder workshops in order to disseminate its findings to relevant communities (hydropower authorities, agriculture and forestry, etc.), it would be appropriate to set up a working group in collaboration with the European Commission. This working group would typically comprise 10-15 persons working at the EU policy level and within governmental (e.g., environment ministries and/or water management authorities) and supra-national bodies (e.g., CIPRA, International Rhine Commission and similar organization). The policy working group will be updated on ACQWA results at regular intervals, both using Internet facilities and through targeted meetings. By creating this “interface”, it is expected that the policy-relevant information will reach the appropriate targets in the most rapid and efficient manner.

Other potential spin-offs from this Work Package

- Creation of an interuniversity alpine network (Switzerland, France, Italy, Germany and Austria) for delivering courses (either as part of an existing Masters Program or in the form of a summer school) on issues specific to the ACQWA project, in particular the methodological developments and modelling techniques. Such an international course could become a model for other consortium members and other sets of countries (e.g, trans-boundary Andean university partnerships on water issues).

- Production of a booklet for students for all the ages about climatic change in mountains and key water issues to de distributed in schools of regions concerned by these problems (including a teacher’s manual)

- These spin-offs would not be part of formal ACQWA deliverables but are destined to be follow-on products that will go beyond the duration of the project.