Nature offers innovations and solutions to societal challenges
ALTER-Net, Europe’s Ecosystem Research Network, organized an international conference from 19 to 21 May 2015 in Ghent, Belgium, focusing on the potential of nature-based solutions to societal challenges in urban regions. ECNC, which has been part of ALTER-Net since its establishment, attended the conference, and also participated in the poster sessions (with OPPLA).
ALTER-Net has worked in cooperation with the European Commission and various other institutions and partners. The conference provided a forum for dialogue across fields of research, policy and practice engaged in nature and urban well-being. During the closing plenary session on 21 May, experts and stakeholders discussed the outcomes of the conference, looked for policy options, and judged the applicability of the conference outcomes to nature-based solutions.
One of the main conclusions was that nature-based solutions should benefit multiple purposes and demands, but should always also benefit nature, including ‘hard core’ biodiversity.