Course

Aquatic Ecology: Robustness of urban aquatic ecosystems

Aquatic ecosystems play a crucial role in human health and well-being. Aquatic systems also provide diverse habitats, support high levels of biodiversity and vital ecosystems services. With over half of the human population currently living in cities, the health of urban waters is becoming ever more vital. Urban aquatic ecosystems, however, are under severe anthropogenic pressure. Unprecedented rates of global change add a sense of urgency to study the impacts of anthropogenic pressures, and to develop ways to restore and improve the robustness of urban aquatic ecosystems against these pressures.

Organised by Graduate schools WIMEK and PE&RC
Date

Sun 2 April 2023 until Fri 7 April 2023

Scope

Aquatic ecosystems play a crucial role in human health and well-being as a source of drinking water and food (irrigation, fisheries, and aquaculture), recreation, and tourism. Aquatic systems also provide diverse habitats, support high levels of biodiversity and vital ecosystems services and play a vital role in the global carbon cycle and in various nutrient cycles. With over half of the human population currently living in cities, the health of urban waters is becoming ever more vital. These waters are now increasingly recognized as novel and valuable ecosystems in the urban landscape. Urban aquatic ecosystems, however, are under severe anthropogenic pressure such as eutrophication, inorganic pollution, acidification, invasive species, extraction of upstream water , and climate change. Unprecedented rates of global change add a sense of urgency to study the impacts of anthropogenic pressures, and to develop ways to restore and improve the robustness of urban aquatic ecosystems against these pressures.

In this 5-day course we will provide a multifaceted overview of the science on urban aquatic ecosystems and the means by which its robustness can be restored or even improved. The course will consist of a combination of lectures provided by a team of international expert scientists, followed by plenary discussions. In addition, the participants will be working in small teams on specific group work projects. Aside from updating and deepening your scientific knowledge in the field of aquatic ecology, this course also offers an excellent opportunity to broaden your network and to interact with world-class scientists in this field!

Programme and course set up

This course will be structured around three main themes: Aquatic Ecosystems in the city, water quality in Urban ecosystems, and the future of the city and its Aquatic Ecosystems. A detailed draft programme can be found below. Note that this programme and the lecture titles are still tentative, but this should give some impression about the course topics. The group work will be centred around the general theme "Urban aquatic ecosystems in the face of global change". Participants will from project teams and will be invited to choose a predefined topic of attention within this general theme, or to propose a topic themselves for the group work assignment. During the course, the groups will collect the relevant information for their group work projects from the lectures, from individual meetings with the lecturers during the week, from the excursion, and from the literature. Based on this, the groups can work out a product of their choice (e.g., an opinion paper, a grant proposal, a journal manuscript, etc.), which will be presented on Friday morning. 

Programme
DAY 1
Afternoon Arrival at course venue around 4-5 PM
Evening 1. Welcome drinks and dinner
2. Introductory lecture (course aims and themes, group work setup)
DAY 2
Morning session Lectures Aquatic Ecosystems in the city
Afternoon Introduction to group work projects and start of group work assignment
Evening Pitch presentations about group work projects
DAY 3
Morning session Water quality in Urban ecosystems
Afternoon Group work activity
Evening Leisure Lecture
DAY 4
Morning + Afternoon Excursion
Evening Guest lecture
DAY 5
Morning session The future of the city and its Aquatic Ecosystems
Afternoon Update on group work projects and continuation of group work activity
Evening Plenary debate sessions / preparing final group work presentations
DAY 6
Morning Final presentations of the group work projects
Afternoon Travel back home (around 14:00 after Lunch)

Fees (1)

EARLY-BIRD FEE (2) REGULAR FEE (2)
PE&RC / WIMEK / VLAG / WIAS / WASS / EPS / RSEE PhD candidates with an approved TSP € 325,- € 375,-
SENSE PhD candidates with approved TSP € 650,- € 700,-
All other PhD candidates € 690,- € 730,-
Postdocs and staff of the above mentioned Graduate Schools € 690,- € 730,-
All others € 1020,- € 1070,-

(1) The course fee includes accommodation, all meals, course materials, coffee/tea, and water. It does not include beverages in the bar.
(2) The Early-Bird Fee applies to anyone who REGISTERS ON OR BEFORE 19 February 2023

Note

  • If you need an invoice to complete your payment, please send an email to office.pe@wur.nl, including ALL relevant details that should be mentioned on the invoice (e.g., purchase order no., specific addresses, attendees, etc.).
  • The Early-Bird policy is such that the moment of REGISTRATION (and not payment) is leading for determining the fee that applies to you.
  • Please make sure that your payment is arranged within two weeks after your registration.
  • It is the participant's responsibility to make sure that he/she (or his/her secretary) completes the payment correctly and in time.
 

Cancellation Conditions

  • Up to 4 (four) weeks prior to the start of the course, cancellation is free of charge.
  • Up to 2 (two) weeks prior to the start of the course, a fee of € 325,- will be charged.
  • In case of cancellation within two weeks prior to the start of the course, a fee of € 730,- will be charged.
  • If you do not show at all, a fee of € 1060,- will nevertheless be charged.

Note: If you would like to cancel your registration, ALWAYS inform us. By NOT paying the participation fee, your registration is NOT automatically cancelled (and do note that you will be kept to the cancellation conditions)

Also note that when there are not enough participants, we can cancel the course. We will  inform you if this is the case a week after the early bird deadline. Please take this into account when arranging your trip to the course (I.e. check the re-imbursement policies).

More information