Environmental Change & Sustainability: Informing Policy & Practice

Theme members: Mary Kelly-Quinn (Lead), Jan-Robert Baars, Tom Bolger, Paul Brooks, Tasman Crowe, Simone Ciuti, Evelyn Doyle, Tamara Hochstrasser, Florence Renou-Wilson

 Dublin bay

Human activities are severely impacting freshwater, marine and terrestrial ecosystems worldwide with far reaching consequences for the continued supply of the ecosystem services we derive and depend on from nature.  The research under this theme seeks to develop an improved understanding of the ecological processes and associated biodiversity that underpin the sustainable functioning and resilience of ecosystems to improve natural resource and species management, including socio-economic aspects. Key research areas include the assessment of impacts of environmental change, in particular habitat and climate change, invasive species and pollution on species and ecosystems, and the sustainable management of natural resources in relation to agriculture, forestry, hunting, fisheries, recreation and conservation. The School draws on a unique breadth of expertise to enable a fully integrated approach to these research challenges, from insect-plant interactions to ecology, movement and behaviour of large mammals, and from impacts of pollutants and climatic change on marine and freshwater organisms to dispersal ecology and invasion dynamics. Researchers in this theme communicate closely with environmental policy makers, managers and industrial partners to maximise the impact of their findings and their translation into policy and practice.

 

Researchers within this theme seek to address the following key objectives:

(i) Advance our understanding of ecology and the processes that influence biodiversity and ecosystem structure and function.

(ii) Assess and predict the impacts of environmental change on species, ecosystems and environmental sustainability.

(iii) Provide a scientific basis for sustainable management of natural resources and environmental policy making.