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Since the nature of geosciences research is global, the Directorate for Geosciences (GEO) also supports international collaborations and partnerships. In addition to the research programs supported through GEO's three Divisions – Atmospheric, Global Image Earth and Ocean Sciences – the Directorate also supports several international, multi-disciplinary activities. This support is "in kind" as well as financial, and ranges from small planning grants to administrative support to full research projects.

In addition to supporting research, many of the organizations supported by the Directorate for Geosciences help facilitate the open exchange of data, assist in the movement of scientific equipment across borders, provide a fora for the exchange of ideas and a means for international planning and costsharing.


  REGIONAL INSTITUTES FOR GLOBAL CHANGE RESEARCH

The three regional institutes for global change research – Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research, European Network for Research on Global Change and Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research – were created to facilitate the integration of global change research programs on a regional basis. Each of the various institutes/networks are at a different point in their evolution and U.S. participation also varies.

The Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI) was designed to facilitate the flow of scientific resources and data across borders for the benefit of all participants, and ultimately to enrich the information available to policymakers in all member countries to assist in the formulation of policies related to global change. The scientific agenda of the IAI is currently focused on four themes that were selected as being regionally relevant and globally significant, while lending themselves to a multinational research program.

The IAI current research themes are:

1. Understanding Climate Variability in the Americas
– ENSO and Interannual Climate Variability
– Ocean/Land/Atmosphere Interactions
– Hydrology

2. Comparative Studies of Ecosystems, Biodiversity, Land Use, and Water Resources in the Americas
– Tropical Ecosystems and Biogeochemical Cycles
– Impacts of Climate Change on Biodiversity
– Comparative Studies of Oceanic, Coastal, and Estuarine Processes
– Comparative Studies of Terrestrial Ecosystems
– Changes in Land Use, Land Cover, and in Hydrology and Water Resources

3. Changes in the – Compoisition of the Atmosphere
– High Latitude Processes and Ozone
– Biogeochemical Cycles
– Comparative Studies of Regional Air and Water Pollution

4. Integrated Assessments, Human Dimensions, and Applications
– The National Science Foundation was designated as the lead funding agency of the U.S. Government.

The NSF Program Director for IAI is Dr. Paul Filmer and he can be reached via e:mail at pfilmer@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7858.

The European Network for Research on Global Change (ENRICH) was established to pursue a major coherent European contribution to international actions on global change research. While considering the needs of the European Community (EC), and the European Union (EU) and EFTA Member States, ENRICH aims to support the knowledge base for the development of EU policy objectives. It intends to do so by acting as a clearinghouse for the exchange of information and by promoting cooperation in research and capacity building. In addition to promoting collaboration in Western Europe (EU and EFTA), ENRICH also aims to encourage the endogenous research capabilities in developing countries mainly, but not exclusively in Africa and the Mediterranean Basin and to promote support for relevant research initiative in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the New Independent States of the former Soviet Union (NIS).

The NSF liaison to ENRICH is Dr. Paul Filmer and he can be reached via e:mail at pfilmer@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7858.

The Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) is an inter-governmental organisation whose mission is to foster global change research in the Asia-Pacific region, increase developing country participation in that research, and strengthen interactions between the science community and policy makers.

The APN believes that international cooperation among governments and scientists will help increase the understanding of the complex mechanisms and impacts of global change on ecosystems and human society in the Asia-Pacific region. This is necessary to identify and address the problems that may arise from that change.

The APN also believes that working in partnership with other organisations involved in global change research is essential to maximise the resources available and to deliver the best possible results. In particular, the APN cooperates closely with the global change SysTem for Analysis, Research, and Training (START), the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP), the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change (IHDP), the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), and DIVERSITAS.

Anyone interested in establishing closer contact with the APN or who would like further information on APN funding and other activities should contact the Secretariat.

APN Secretariat
IHD Centre Building, 5th Floor
1-5-1 Wakinohama Kaigan Dori
Chuo-Ku, Kobe 651-0073
Japan

Tel: +81-78-230-8017
Fax: +81-78-230-8018
Email: info@apn.gr.jp
Website: www.apn.gr.jp

The USGCRP liaison to APN is Mr. Lou Brown and he can be reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.

  OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

  • The Arctic Ocean Sciences Board

    Mr. Lou Brown is the Secretary to the Arctic Ocean Sciences Board and he can be reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.

  • Global Change SysTem for Analysis, Research and Training (START)

    The Directorate for Geosciences provides support for the Global Change System for Analysis, Research and Training (START)

    Mr. Lou Brown is the point of contact for START and he can be reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.

  • IASC

    Mr. Lou Brown is the point of contact for IASC and he can be reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.

  • The International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU)

    The International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU) is a non-governmental organization founded to bring together natural scientists in international scientific endeavor. ICSU comprises 94 multidisciplinary National Scientific Members (scientific research councils or science academies) and 23 international, single-discipline Scientific Unions to provide a wide spectrum of scientific expertise enabling members to address major international, interdisciplinary issues. ICSU also has 30 Scientific Associates.

    The point of contact for ICSU within the Directorate for Geosciences is Mr. Lou Brown and he can be reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.

  • The International Group of Funding Agencies (IGFA)

    The International Group of Funding Agencies (IGFA) is an informal partnership of national agencies which fund global change research programs and other activities supporting such research. The purpose of IGFA is to facilitate international global change research in the natural, social and economic sciences by bringing the perspective of these national funding agencies to strategic planning and implementation of research programs.

    Mr. Lou Brown is the Chair of the IGFA Secretariat and can be reached via e:mail at IGFA@nsf.gov or lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.


  INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION ACTIVITIES

The Global Learning to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Program is an international program designed to develop links between scientists and schoolchildren through a global information network.

The National Science Foundation participates in GLOBE by providing on-going support for research, curriculum development and workshops. Funding support is provided through the Directorate for Education and Human Resources and the Directorate for Geosciences.

Dr. Paul Filmer is the point of contact for GLOBE. He can be reached via e:mail at pfilmer@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7858.

The SysTem for Analysis, Research, and Training (START) program aims to develop a system of regional networks of collaborating scientists and institutions that will conduct research on regional aspects of global change; assess the causes and impacts of that change; provide relevant information to policy makers and governments; enhance the scientific capacity in developing countries by strengthening and connecting existing institutions by training global change scientists and by providing them with improved and enhanced access to data, communication technology and research results. The International Human Dimensions Programme, International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme and the World Climate Research Programme are joint sponsors of START.

In some parts of the world, particularly the developing regions, the ability to conduct regional research is hampered by a lack of scientific personnel and adequate infrastructure. The START initiative is intended to enhance the indigenous capacity of these regions to participate in the various global scientific change research programs. A world-encompassing set of regions was initially identified through the START initiative some of which are being developed under other initiatives such as the IAI and ENRICH. All of the regions are important to understanding global change because each has distinctive environmental and socio-economic characteristics. Priority is given by START to establishing regional research networks in the developing world where the needs are greatest.

Mr. Lou Brown is the NSF liaison to START can reached via e:mail at lbrown@nsf.gov or by telephone at (703) 292-7856.


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