The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences initiated a series of seminars on Research for Mountain Area Development in 1997, 1998, and 1999, held at the Academy's Abisko Research Station in northern Lapland. The aim of the seminars was to explore the state of the art in research on sustainable use and management of mountain areas and contribute to the action plan put forward in Chapter 13 of Agenda 21. Papers presented during the seminars have been published in the Academy's international journal of the human environment, AMBIO (Ambio No 4/1998, No 5/1999 and No 7/2000, respectively; abstracts of the papers can be read on the AMBIO web site at www.ambio.kva.se).
To celebrate the International Year of Mountains (IYM) in 2002, the Academy organized a synthesis workshop in Abisko on 7–10 June 2001. The small group of participants, from 4 continents, represented a broad range of disciplines. Their task was to sum up and elaborate on the major ideas, highlights, and gaps identified at the 3 seminars and since 1992 and thus to develop a research agenda for the IYM and beyond. For each broad topic, critical issues, gaps, and research needs were defined. The edited outputs of the workshop will be disseminated as a report at major meetings relating to the IYM and at the “Rio +10” meeting in Johannesburg in September 2002. They will also be published in AMBIO.
For more information, contact Professor Mats Sonesson, Chairman of the Organizing Committee, IYM 2002 Synthesis Workshop, The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Mats.Sonesson@planteco.lu.se.