The REACT4MED consortium is composed of 10 participants from 9 Mediterranean countries. The objectives of the proposal demand an inter-Mediterranean and multidisciplinary approach. The consortium consists of different kinds of organisations (universities, research institutes, industry, and SME) with different levels of expertise and interests in water and land management research and practice.
HMU is the largest higher education institution on the Island of Crete, Greece, operating in 6 different campuses, with over 18,000 students and 1,000 staff members. The Special Account of Research Funds (ELKE-HMU), which is the body responsible for the management of research activities, has invested over 15 M€ in infrastructure during the past 10 years and has managed funding of over 40 M€ during the past 5 years.
The Laboratory of Natural Resources Management and Agricultural Engineering (NRMAE) of the Department of Agriculture of HMU is directed by Professor T. Manios, Vice-Rector of HMU. Since his appointment as head of the laboratory in 2005, NRMAE has implemented over 40 research projects with a total funding of more than 11,5 M€, including 4 Life / Life+, 1 FP7, 1 Horizon, 5 EEA Grants, 4 Interreg, 1 Urban Innovation Actions, 12 National from the Greek Secretary for Research and Technology (as partner), 5 from GSRT as Subcontractor to SME, 4 from Municipalities and Regions and numerous from private companies. As a result of these projects, NRMAE has a joint record of over 150 publications with over 4,000 citations in the wider field of agricultural science and applications. NRMAE currently occupies 3 post-docs, 4 PhD candidates, 4 graduate students and 3 technicians.
SoftWater is an ICT start-up company, founded at the end of 2017 from two researchers of the Natural Resource Management Group of Politecnico di Milano University. SoftWater aims to bring academic innovative tools and methodologies toward the market, with specific focus on institutions and environmental agencies. It targets developing integrated solutions to support environmental policies and to foster a smart and sustainable water and natural resources management. Its expertise includes database design and management, data analysis and processing, mapping and GIS development, models identification, optimal problem solving using stochastic and genetic based algorithms.
SoftWater members have strong connections and collaborations with many research groups, like the Environmental Intelligence for Global Change Group of Politecnico di Milano, Agricultural Hydraulics of Università degli Studi di Milano and Hydrology and Water Resources Management at ETH Zurich. These three research groups are also represented in the SoftWater scientific advisors’ board. Through these groups, they have been involved in many national and international projects funded both by EU programme (H2020, Interreg) and national institution like Minister of Foreign Affairs or Fondazione Cariplo, such as PROJECT O, DAFNE, STRADA, IMRR, SOWATCH. SoftWater have several consultancy activities, with both public agency and private companies, and it benefits from a wide network of collaborations which are complementing and enriching its expertise.
TUC is a modern technological institution that has established a strong international reputation. The mission of the TUC is to develop modern engineering specialties, to place emphasis on research in fields of advanced technology as well as to establish close cooperation with industry and other production organizations in Greece. In its 20 years of operation, the School of Environmental Engineering has been distinguished on National and the international level. It is the 6th most successful faculty in Greece and is ranked between 151-200 in Civil Engineering according to the World Ranking of World Universities for the year 2017. The School has a strong international presence in research aiming to develop innovative solutions to current environmental problems.
Within FP5-7 and H2020 of the EU, TUC has been and continues to be involved, either as coordinator or partner institution, in more than 100 projects, with a large share of projects working on environment, water resources, climate impacts and sustainable management, such as the IMPREX, HELIX, IMPACT2C, SoilCare, RECARE, CASCADE, ECLISE, COMBINE, as well as LIFE-environment programs and several National research programs funded by the General Secretariat for Research and Technology.
Osnabrueck University, founded in 1974, is located in northwest Germany and carries out research and teaching in the areas of Social Sciences, Science, Humanities, Law and Business Administration/Economics. The project will involve the Resources Management group within the Department of Geography and the interdisciplinary Institute of Environmental Systems Research (IUSF). The Resources Management group focuses on the development of innovative concepts for managing transformation processes towards sustainability with an emphasis on an improved understanding of dynamics of actor networks, socio-technical innovations and complex resource governance and management systems. IUSF is an inter-faculty research centre involving all faculties, which renders IUSF in a unique environment for interdisciplinary research topics, such as the water-energy-food nexus. The main research areas undertaken include resources management, ecosystems analysis, water management and governance, adaptive management, biogeochemical modelling, theoretical biology and ecology, environmental exposure and risk analysis. IUSF develops the knowledge base for understanding, assessing and transforming concrete systems. The research carried out relies on a variety of methods from mathematics, computer science, natural sciences, economics and social sciences in an integrated manner, and develops them further.
The Cyprus Institute (cyi.ac.cy) is a non‐profit research and educational institution with a strong scientific and technological orientation, created in 2005. It is an issue‐orientated institution, emphasizing international collaborations and cross‐disciplinary research and education. The CYI has established four interdisciplinary research centers which are developed in partnership with leading institutions. Since its foundation CYI actively participated in numerous EU projects (including an ERC) and it is ranked as the first Institute in Cyprus (normalized by its personnel) in EU grants. The Energy, Environment and Water Research Center (EEWRC) of CYI was developed in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is guided by an international Scientific Expert Panel. Research at EEWRC deals with societally relevant issues related to energy, environment, climate and water. EEWRC’s overarching mission is the understanding of and preparing for the major challenges and changes in the environment, socio-economic structures and societies in the Eastern Mediterranean in the 21st century. The Canter has a PhD program in Energy, Environment and Atmospheric Sciences.
The Water Division of the EEWRC of CYI has coordinated and participated in numerous research projects related to water and natural resource management, environmental observations and climate change impact and adaptation assessments, funded by FP7, H2020, ERANET, WATER-JPI, PRIMA, Interreg and the Cyprus Research and Innovation Foundation. Researchers of the Division also serve as reviewers of the economic computations of the support measures for the National Rural Development Program of the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment.
Founded in 1963, UH received full academic accreditation in 1972, becoming Israel’s sixth academic institution and the fourth university. Over 18,000 students from a wide range of ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds are enrolled at UH, the largest research university in northern Israel, and the most pluralistic institution of higher education in the country. Through an accelerated growth strategy, the University has established Israel’s first “Multiversity” – a multi-campus institution that promotes extensive interdisciplinary studies and partnerships. The Multiversity is designed to improve access to higher education in northern Israel, better prepare students for a dynamic job market and serve as a catalyst for economic expansion and strengthening Israel’s northern region. As a thriving academic centre, the University comprises six faculties, 59 departments, ten schools and 57 research centres and institutes. The University has gained an international reputation in a variety of fields, including public health, security studies, neurosciences, bioinformatics, marine sciences, education, and epigenetics. The University also offers 18 international graduate programs taught in English and a Study Abroad program.
UH has participated and is participating in several National and International projects, such as EU-State-Israel Joint Innovation Projects and H2020 Projects.
UVEG is a five-century old university research-oriented and teaching in all scientific fields (social, economic and legal sciences, experimental sciences, engineering, health sciences, educational sciences and the humanities) and University levels of Education (Bachelor, Masters, PhD Programs, etc). More than 45,800 undergraduate students and 8,600 postgraduate students take classes taught by more than 3,300 professors, lectures, and researchers at our campuses (Blasco Ibáñez, Burjassot-Paterna and Tarongers). Currently, the University of Valencia, stands out as one of the main public research organisations in Spain. UVEG supports researchers’ international activities through units such as Section for International RTD and Section for Valorisation and Entrepreneurship, as well as several central services supporting European-funded research projects. The Department of Geography is within the best at national level and develops pure and applied science.
UVEG has participated and is participating in several European projects under the subsequent RTD European Framework Programmes and other European programmes such as Erasmus, Leonardo, LIFE+, COST, Third Health Programme, EEA Grants, Daphne III, Creative Europe, acting as several roles: coordinator, contractor, associated contractor, member, host institution, thus gaining experience in the development and management of more than 400 European Projects. UV also takes part in VLC/Campus, an action that has been distinguished as a Campus of International Excellence, a stamp of quality awarded by the Spanish Ministry for Science and Innovation. Within FP5-7 and H2020 of the EU, UVEG has been and is constantly involved, either as coordinator or partner institution in projects related to environmental issues, land degradation, human impact, water resources, climate impacts and sustainable management, as well as LIFE-Environment programs and several National research programs funded by the General Secretariat for Research and Technology.
INRA has over a century of experience as a public institution under the supervision of the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Waters and Forests. INRA’s mission is to ensure sustainable agricultural development and natural resources use (water, soil, and biodiversity) through knowledge generation and technology creation. It has greatly contributed to the modernization of the agricultural sector and agro-systems, and to the improvement of the competitiveness of the country’s agriculture. INRA staff is composed of 193 researchers, 218 technicians and 41 managers. INRA receives many local and overseas graduate and post-graduate students.
Over the last 40 years, INRA has developed research and leading projects and programs on sustainable intensification basically through conservation agriculture and integrated resource management. INRA is the unique research institution responsible for crop improvement through classic and high-tech genetics and biotechnology. INRA is an active partner of both international and regional organizations, mainly ICARDA, EC, ICGEG, CIMMYT, AARINENA, FARA, COI, ICRA, and others. Moreover, INRA is a member of several regional networks and maintains bilateral cooperation with several countries.
CIHEAM is an intergovernmental organization founded in 1962 under the auspices of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the Council of Europe bringing together 13 Euro-Mediterranean countries. CIHEAM Bari plays a leading research role in sustainable use and management of land and water resources, integrated pest management and organic farming. As a centre of post-graduate training, for over more than half a century the CIHEAM Bari has trained hundreds of students and has established an efficient network expanding far beyond the Mediterranean region.
Only in the academic year 2019-2010 the institute trained 88 fully funded students, of which 52 in the first year of studies and 31 MSc students from Mediterranean countries and beyond. It organized 23 short training courses attended by 341 trainees from the Mediterranean and other countries as far as Pakistan. All the courses comply with ISO 90001/2015 for education and training. CIHEAM Bari has a 10-ha experimental site and a modern Soil, Water, Plant Lab fully equipped with the latest equipment. The institute collaborates closely with FAO, EC, World Bank, IFAD, UNCCD, UNEP, Arab Water Council and many other national research and education institutions. In 2020 the institute participated as lead applicant or partner in ca. 90 projects funded by many donors.
The International Agricultural Research and Training Center (UTAEM) was founded in 1994 and originally functioned Agricultural Hydrology Research and Training Center, changing to UTAEM in 2009. The aim of UTAEM is to increase productivity and quality in agricultural production, provide national and international education and training about preserving natural and genetic resources and their sustainable use and conduct research about these trainings. UTAEM provides scientific and applied services in the field of SLWM under the General Directorate of Agricultural Research and Policy of The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.
UTAEM has participated and is participating in several national and international projects such as; European Union; H2020, Interreg IIB Medocc Programme, United Nations Office for South&South Cooperation. National Projects funded by General Directorate of Agricultural Research and Policy and The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey. The research projects generally related to the soil and water resources management remote sensing, water quality and irrigation technologies.