Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment (GMBA)

Workshops, Conferences & Webinars

GMBA regularly brings together members of the mountain biodiversity community for smaller or larger online and in person events. Various workshops, conferences, and webinars target different members of the community, ranging from scientists to policy-makers. GMBA also facilitates external events by serving as co-organizer and by contributing with members of its network.

Workshops and conferences

Conference sessions

  • Southern African Mountain Conference 2022, Maloti-Drakensberg (South Africa), 14 -17.03.2022
  • World Biodiversity Forum 2022, Davos (Switzerland), 26.06 -01.07.2022: Session A11c - Global mountain biodiversity (lead: Markus Fischer)
    Read the conference resolution...
  • SIL100, Berlin (Germany), 07.08-10.08.2022: High-mountain aquatic biodiversity: status, trends, and drivers of change (lead: Jordi Catalan)
  • INTECOL 2022, Geneva (Switzerland), 28.08-02.09.2022: Session 6.2 - Mountain ecology and biodiversity of terrestrial and aquatic mountain systems under change (lead: Markus Fischer, Antoine Guisan, Davnah Urbach, Christian Körner)


International Mountain Conference 2022, Innsbruck (Austria), 11-15.09.2022

  • Session 04: Alpine aquatic biodiversity (lead: Dean Jacobsen)
    Whereas research on terrestrial mountain ecosystems and their biodiversity is steadily growing, life in alpine waters remains to date comparatively understudied. This is the case even though the importance of mountain aquatic habitats is undisputed and despite evidence for growing effects of global change on mountain freshwater species, ecosystems, and the functions they fulfil. This session aims at bringing together mountain aquatic biodiversity scientists to discuss the state-of-knowledge on the status of, trends in, and drivers of change in aquatic mountain biodiversity, from microbes to vertebrates, and share recent research on the three priority themes of the Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment working group on aquatic mountain biodiversity, namely (i) changes in and threats to, (2) long-term monitoring of, and (3) conservation, restoration, and sustainable management of mountain aquatic ecosystems and their biodiversity. We further welcome contributions on paleolimnology as a tool for understanding long-term biodiversity dynamics in mountain freshwaters.
  • Session 43: Mountain soil biodiversity above the treeline (lead: Julia Seeber)
    Soil degradation and the loss of soil biodiversity form one of the major threats from global change in many regions of the world. This is also true for mountains, where soils are particularly susceptible to climate warming and land-use change through intensification or abandonment strategies. Given that soils take thousands of years to develop, their degradation and gradual erosion presents an ultimate ecosystem collapse with no option for repair and with profound consequences for nature and people alike. Even though mountain soils fulfil important functions, such as water filtration for lowlands and carbon storage, little is known about their biodiversity and the functions related to soil biota. In this session, we aim to bring together experts, including ecologists, botanists, microbiologists, and zoologists working on mountain soil organisms from all over the world to discuss soil organisms diversity, functional roles, and response under global change.
  • Session 53: Policy-relevant mountain biodiversity monitoring (lead: Christophe Randin)
    Some of the most critical data for quantifying environmental changes in mountain social-ecological systems and identifying their causes, for understanding these systems and predicting their trajectories, and for informing environmental policies and agendas across scales are the time series provided by monitoring programs. However, to date we still lack the holistic and integrated framework needed to simultaneously observe the multiple dimensions of mountain social-ecosystems and the effects of the multiple factors driving their long-term change. In this session we propose to bring together an interdisciplinary group of mountain scientists to achieve an overview of existing and novel approaches to the integrated and adaptive monitoring of mountain regions across social and environmental sciences and discuss future avenues of how to (i) best delivers scientific and quantitative information about the state and trends of social-ecological mountain systems in the face of global change and (ii) best inform environmental policies.

Workshops and Conferences


Date: Tuesday 22 August 2023, 2pm CEST
Speakers: Nigel Yoccoz, Laszlo Nagy, and Fransisco Cuesta 

During this webinar, Nigel Yoccoz, Laszlo Nagy, and Fransisco Cuesta will shed light on similarities and differences in alpine ecosystems across the world's mountains.

Perspective I - the Arctic: Alpine ecosystems are characterized by low temperatures, and their elevational distribution is therefore partly linked to latitude. As many mountain ranges reach into the Arctic, it means that there is no sharp limit between what has been called Arctic and alpine vegetation, and this is exemplified by many “arctic-alpine” plant distributions. On the contrary, many mammal and bird distributions are disjunct – i.e. they are either alpine or arctic – consider for example emblematic “Arctic” species such as reindeer, muskox, Arctic fox, Snowy owl or snow bunting versus “alpine” species such as chamois, ibex, marmots, snowfinch or alpine chough. Nigel Yoccoz from the Arctic University of Norway will discuss some of the climatic and historical factors that can explain the difference between plants and higher vertebrates, in particular differences in terms of snow conditions.

Perspective II - the Andes: The Andes stretches over more than 60 degrees of latitude, running from north to south, crossing macroclimatic and biogeographic boundaries. Today’s montane and alpine landscapes and vegetation bear witness to historic and recent land use. How climate change and socio-economic drivers may further shape Andean alpine biodiversity and ecosystems has attracted much attention. Laszlo Nagy and frasisco Cuesta from the University of Campinas (Brazil) and the University of the Americas (Ecuador) will present a brief historic panorama and recent trends in Andean alpine biodiversity.