From August 29th to 31st, 2016, in Piracicaba, Brazil, the ‘Fifth International Workshop of the Terra Preta Program’ took place. The final workshop of the program was attended by a diverse and interdisciplinary group of around 65 researchers working on anthropogenic soils/landscapes, biochar and related subjects, representing around 23 institutions from five countries (The Netherlands, Brazil, Colombia, Germany and South Africa).
The program of the workshop included talks grouped in thematic sessions (in total 28 talks grouped in 10 sessions) and followed by chaired discussions. Some of the participants (15) also presented posters about their ongoing research; in the end of each day, these participants provided a short ‘pitch talk’, during which they introduced themselves and provided a short description of their poster, which remained exposed during the three days of the event.
After three days of interesting presentations on diverse topics, fruitful discussions and lively social interactions, and thanks to the commitment of all the participants, the objectives of the workshop were successfully achieved, which were:
- To communicate and reflect critically about the main achievements of the Terra Preta Program;
- To identify knowledge gaps and indicate avenues for future research related to anthropogenic soils and human-modified landscapes, particularly but not exclusively in tropical South America;
- To maintain, strengthen and establish collaborations between researchers, research networks and institutions from Brazil and abroad.
With these achievements, we are convinced that the Terra Preta Program brought substantial scientific progress and also catalysed interactions between researchers working on human-modified soils and related topics. We trust that this will still result in significant achievements and will foster many collaborations in the near future.