Our mission at CIRES is to advance research on the resilience of socio-ecological systems in face of global change, facilitating better governance outcomes that take into account environmental, social and economic concerns. To achieve this we have organized a multi-disciplinary group with the following aims:
1. To develop a regional hub for scientific exchange and collaborative research in conservation ecology and sustainability.
Asia has undergone rapid changes over the last half-century, with its economies and populations becoming increasingly dominant forces in global politics and development. Such change brings new socio-ecological challenges that require robust scientific understanding for informed policy-making.
CIRES is the first research center of its kind in the region, located in Taiwan and modelled on organizations such as NCEAS, SESYNC and iDiv. Taiwan is a highly developed democracy that serves as a gateway to regional economic powerhouses and biodiversity hotspots, with direct flight connections to Europe, North America and Australasia. CIRES is therefore in a unique position to bring together scientists from around the world for collaboration on some of the most pressing issues in conservation ecology and sustainability.
2. To cultivate an interdisciplinary approach for solving complex socio-ecological problems.
The complexity of environmental issues often requires a depth and breadth of expertise that is beyond a single institution. Scientists with multiple research backgrounds and perspectives need to be connected to solve the most challenging socio-ecological problems we face today.
At CIRES we will host up to four international, multidisciplinary working groups a year, with an emphasis on analysing and synthesising long-term ecological datasets from tropical and subtropical Asia. Please see our Updates and Events page for upcoming or previous working groups. Several projects have already begun, and we welcome other proposals or datasets from our collaborators. Please see our Projects from the navigation menu to see what we are currently planning or working on, and contact us if you would like to discuss new ideas.
3. To encourage graduate education and promote public interest in our work.
CIRES is hosted by the College of Environmental Studies at National Dong Hwa University, Hualien. We encourage both Taiwanese and international graduate students to become involved in the research taking place here, and offer training in the data analysis and synthesis skills needed for effective socio-ecological research. We also plan to facilitate internships and volunteering for those who wish to gain more experience and awareness of environmental issues. Please see the Postgraduate Study and Vacancies pages for opportunities.
Public awareness, interest and support is critical to progress in biodiversity conservation and sustainability. We will therefore be holding open events to communicate our work and its implications, which will appear on our Updates and Events page.