5 SERVICES Available for this Call

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Social science for land-use strategies in the context of climate change and biodiversity challenges
Deadline: Sep 27, 2022  
- 369 days

 Fisheries and Food
 Social Innovation
 Raw Materials
 Renewable Energy
 Gender Equality
 Aerospace Technology
 Education and Training
 Climate Sciences


Project results are expected to contribute to all of the following expected outcomes:

  • A characterisation of future expected land use patterns consistent with long-term objectives (especially on climate, biodiversity and renewable energy) and its comparison with the current situation and trends.
  • A comprehensive understanding of the key motivations and drivers (economic, regulatory, legal, cultural, environmental, etc.) behind land-use related decisions in Europe at levels ranging from land owners to public authorities at local, regional and national level, including their relative importance.
  • A better understanding of the awareness of key actors (land owners, managers, local authorities, regulatory agencies) about climate change and biodiversity challenges and their willingness to contribute addressing them, including the adoption of new or different practices consistent with long-term expectations.

Support to climate (mitigation, adaptation) and biodiversity policy design and implementation through economic and behavioural insights allowing the efficient targeting of incentives and engagement of stakeholders in a cost-effective manner, taking into account telecoupling (displacement effects through changes in imports and exports).


Actions should aim to gain a realistic understanding of the factors behind land-use decisions and how they can be best oriented towards the efficient and socially responsible pursuit of multiple policy objectives on various scales (from the individual field/farm to region to national to continental scale). They should develop a toolbox of instruments and approaches deployable at different levels consistent with long-term goals and strategies considering, inter alia:

  • The need for land to provide net sequestration and biomass flows consistent with the demands of various mitigation pathways, on different timescales.
  • The continued need for land to provide food, feed and raw materials under increasing climate change and other pressures and needs (e.g., water availability, climate change resilience).
  • The potential for demand-side measures that can contribute to long-term objectives (such as sustainable and healthy dietary change) and how they can be deployed.
  • The crucial need for halting and, if possible, reversing biodiversity loss in Europe and globally.
  • The socioeconomic dynamics, behavioural patterns and inertia related to land ownership, management and policies.
  • The considerable diversity of land use patterns, approaches and biogeographic conditions in Europe, including land-related resources such as water.
  • The need to make the instruments and approaches, including collective learning and negotiation processes at local and landscape scale, widely and practically available to the key actors, to enable sustainable change.
  • The need to avoid rebound (detrimental displacement effects).

Actions should focus on one or more of the following issues:

  1. Development of realistic scenarios and workable models for optimising the contribution of land to climate change mitigation, adaptation and biodiversity objectives, where possible integrating with Integrated Assessment Models (IAMs), consistent with expectations while reducing conflicts, exploiting synergies and managing risks (agroforestry can be one example of a system that allows higher productivity, more resilience and more biodiversity at the same time).
  2. Economic and behavioural insights into land use related decisions, barriers to change, efficient design of incentives. This should explore the relative merits of instruments (regulatory, market-based, education, soft policy).
  3. Explore a range of delivery mechanisms that could best incentivise the upscaling of the required changes under real-life situations in multiple settings (countries, biogeographical regions).
  4. Develop workable models for effective and efficient monitoring and incentivising public goods benefits (such as emissions reductions, biodiversity protection and water services).
  5. Contribute to the better quantification of land-related greenhouse gas flux trajectories for integrated assessment models on relevant scales (including displacement effects).

Participation of and co-creation with relevant societal stakeholders should be part of the action, including interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research and the contribution from social sciences and humanities and other relevant disciplines.

Synergies should be ensured with topics related to land-use, biodiversity and ecosystems in Cluster 5 and in other Clusters, with the implementation of the Mission on Adaptation to climate change including societal transformation, as well as with other relevant actions, programmes and initiatives[1].

This topic requires the effective contribution of SSH disciplines and the involvement of SSH experts, institutions as well as the inclusion of relevant SSH and gender expertise, in order to produce meaningful and significant effects enhancing the societal impact of the related research activities.

Social innovation is recommended when the solution is at the socio-technical interface and requires social change, new social practices, social ownership or market uptake.

Cross-cutting Priorities:

Socio-economic science and humanities
Social Innovation

[1]E.g. UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.

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