• Strengthening public policies, models and management practices for soil and water
  • Improved climate and terrestrial biosphere models
  • Operationalization of transdisciplinarity

Impact, engagement and dissemination plan

A collective response to major societal challenges promises the best results. This requires a more coordinated approach to benefit partners by agreeing on common interests and mutual benefits, identifying excellent R&I resources and human capabilities, and avoiding duplication of activities. VULCAR-FATE is designed to strengthen observations on sensitive environments. The project will have several lasting consequences in ID/TD collaboration between social science and critical area partners (e.g., water cycle, carbon and nutrient cycle, and GHG emissions). In the longer term, VULCAR-FATE should contribute to establishing a global and coherent dialogue to implement coordinated and joint actions based on complementarity and synergy. The networks developed strengthen the actors in their own modality of actions. The activities take into account the reality of the fields of study: uses, regulations, legislation. It is expected that science-based results will be used by politicians to establish benchmarks and allow a realistic view of an otherwise far too complex subject. Scientific expertise and the presence of NGOs and users guarantee a positive impact of the action on the environment and society. The digital solutions and role plays developed and deployed will all contribute to improving the sustainability of soils, rivers and groundwater in the medium and long term.

Beneficiaries, research use and user interaction methods

Beneficiaries will include academic researchers, non-governmental, governmental, and supra-governmental organizations (e.g., ECCAS), industries, and citizens (especially vulnerable indigenous peoples) living in high latitudes and equatorial regions sensitive to carbon cycle-induced climate change and water-related issues. The project engages not only producers and users of knowledge and innovations, but also organizations working at the science-user interface to transfer/value innovations (e.g., NGOs/grassroots/development organizations and civil society organizations), as well as policy makers. (e.g. local, regional, national and supranational authorities) who define the policy/legal frameworks and incentives that enable innovations to spread and practices to change.

Capture, storage and management of ID/TD data generated in the project

The consortium will establish and validate within the first two months a data management plan (DMP) that will follow the research data life cycle (plan / collect / analyze / publish / reuse) and the Belmont Forum’s data management policy, which commits to archiving and ensuring access to collected data over the long term. The DMP will propose the deposit of all datasets and other digital outputs, at the earliest possible time, into well known, supported, secure, and open source repositories and do so in a timely manner. The consortium will report on its compliance with open data procedures at mid-term and end-of-term value-adding events. The coordination and management team (WP1) will recruit a Data Manager for the duration of the project. The project will collect a range of data that will appeal to different researchers and constituents and therefore a diverse range of mechanisms for making data available will be used. All sub-projects will produce large datasets of baseline information, including social surveys, hydrochemical data, field measurements and experimental records, as well as high precision analytical data that are typically generated in small quantities and thus reported in full in academic publications, along with additional data in supplementary tables. In addition, the data will be included in appropriate open source repositories (DataSud, Theaia, and locally Sedoo) and on the project website for easy access and long-term preservation. Project data will also be made freely available via scientific article support information. Overall, the management of these data and metadata facilitates the research, publication, and long-term accessibility of data for social, environmental, and climate research. Planning for this management is a key element for preservation and reuse by the scientific community. The development and implementation of data and software management plans will follow these objectives:

Broad impact of long-term data archiving

Both WCA and WSL are confronted with problems of carbon GHG and sustainability of soils and groundwater. The ambition of the project is to act as a catalyst for further collaborative actions to develop greater coherence in terms of scientific cooperation related to Critical Zone science.VULCAR-FATE provides a science-based strategy for designing plans to improve the long-term operation and maintenance of appropriate, cost-effective monitoring technologies and tools that will help decision makers develop appropriate and sustainable strategies to ensure access to adequate water resources, while maintaining aquatic ecosystems and the vital services they provide. The expanded partnership catalyzed by VULCAR-FATE will generate new collaborative research projects on the critical zone of sufficient quality to attract competitive funding within 2-3 years. The international conference, peer-reviewed journal publications, and doctoral manuscripts will serve as primary vehicles for disseminating the excellence of the project activities. VULCAR-FATE’s achievements in disseminating excellence would be a success in (1) structuring a strong and interactive consortium (USA-France-Russia-Gabon), (2) fostering regional partnerships with neighboring countries that address problems of regional interest, and (3) seizing all partnership opportunities to put efforts into a global perspective. A major problem in countries like WCA and WSL with sparse databases is the acquisition, quality control, and interpolation of input data for models. The result of VULCAR-FATE is therefore a quality controlled reusable database and a set of models, which are calibrated and adapted to local conditions. The calibrated models can be the basis for other projects and educational activities like winter/summer school (webinars) or workshops. They can also be used as regular teaching material for basic courses for undergraduate and graduate students in geography, agriculture, civil engineering. The project will also provide a global change dataset that can be used for vulnerability and adaptation analyses. Other results will be used in scientific publications. Overall, the expected impacts of VULCAR-FATE are the improvement of soil and groundwater management policies, models and practices, the improvement of climate models and the operationalization of transdisciplinarity.

Distribution, publication and intellectual property rights

In order to effectively exploit and disseminate the knowledge and products developed within the project and to stimulate their use by stakeholders and other research activities, a communication plan will be implemented during the first three months. It will specify the key messages, objectives, channels/tools, timetable, means, responsible entities and monitoring/evaluation means. It will be adjusted regularly, taking into account local contexts, audiences, opportunities and available resources. All partners will play their part in supporting the activities at their level, with their own media, to reach a greater number and diversity of people and actors. Templates for the production of communication materials will be created and the multiple communication activities will be recorded in a database that will allow monitoring and guidance of the activities. Different parts of the project will individually have a high scientific value, but our ambition is to integrate all these parts in an innovative and truly IT/TD approach. A large part of the published work will therefore be done in collaboration where all or most of the consortium participants are involved as co-authors due to their specific knowledge. This not only maximizes the quality of the project, but also maximizes the knowledge transfer, as all partners are involved in updating the results of the different parties. The partnership and valorisation services of the public research partners will help to design the consortium agreement/contract to frame the intellectual property and co-ownership aspects of the collective project results and their use for research and/or industrial purposes. All partners will be sensitized and trained on communication aspects and requirements, as they will all be invited to contribute to these activities in order to multiply the actions and enhance their reach and impact to all stakeholders. The management team will ensure that the established terms of reference are followed. Multiple communication activities will be tracked by the management team in a database to track and guide activities. The communication plan will ensure that the funding is displayed with the Belmont Forum logo and the explicit mention “this project is co-funded by the Belmont Forum” on all documents produced in relation to the action: brochures / flyers / posters, newsletters, calls for proposals, scientific / technical publications. The first interface of visibility will be the development of the action website and regular publications on social networks, on which the Belmont Forum logo will be recalled as well as the context of the partnership. Several events are planned (public seminars, follow-up meetings, feedback workshops, webinars, etc.) to make the action visible in various national / regional and international / European contexts. In each country, public seminars with local and national authorities will make the start of the action visible. On these occasions, press releases, contacts with local and regional press and publications on social networks will be planned. In this way, the knowledge gained from VULCAR- FATE will be disseminated