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Our team

The Tour du Valat employs 80 people, who work in different departments and services inside our scientific [1] and support [2] teams.

The scientific team

Consisting of around 45 people, the members of the scientific team (researchers, engineers and technicians) carry out the research and managements projects of the Tour du Valat on a daily basis. The team is structured and organised around 5 themes – Species Conservation [3], EcoHealth [4], Management and restoration of Natural and Agricultural ecosystems [5], Wetland Dynamics and Water Management [6], Science and Society Interfaces [7].

Species Conservation Theme

Species Conservation team
 

The overall objective of this theme is to study threatened species as well as the evolutionary processes that will allow the adaption of species to the ongoing and future environmental changes they will face. This is done while integrating new methods and the latest technologies to monitor and analyse populations.

The theme is composed of three complementary axes:

  • Reversing decline of threatened species;
  • Providing solutions to improve the status of populations;
  • Ensuring ecological connectivity of species for migration and dispersal.

 

EcoHealth Theme

Sampling of bovine excrement for the study of antibiotic resistance on the Tour du Valat Estate. © ZEPPELIN
 

The overall objective of this theme is to study the impact of pollution and the adverse effects associated with it such as infectious diseases and the spread of pathogens that can be devastating for wetland biodiversity. The aim of this theme is to change practices to more sustainable and environmentally friendly approaches to ensure better resilience of ecosystems and prevent large-scale sanitary crises.

The theme is composed of two distinct research axes:

  • Understanding the impacts of pollutants on vertebrates;
  • Reducing the direct and indirect impacts of infectious diseases on wetlands.

 

Management and restoration of Natural and Agricultural ecosystems Theme

[8]
The Management and restoration of Natural and Agricultural ecosystems team
 

The overall objective of this theme is to address the threats of habitat destruction, problematic species, modification of natural systems, pollution, closing up of open spaces and non-sustainable management by promoting the restoration and adaptive management of wetlands.

The theme is divided into two axes:

  • Manage and restore wetlands;
  • Study and promote agroecology.

Wetlands Dynamics and Water Management Theme

Wetlands Dynamic and Water Management team
 

The overall objective of this theme is to determine on different geographical and time scales the changes affecting Mediterranean wetlands and the main drivers behind these trends in order to inform decision-makers, stakeholders as well as managers of the functioning and importance of wetlands. The aim is to assist decision-makers in assuring that water management choices are the best compromise between all the stakes and uses in the area and do not only consider short term issues but the long-term issues as well.

The theme is organised in two axes:

  • Understanding the spatial and temporal dynamics of wetlands;
  • Informing water managament.

Science and Society Interfaces

Science and Society Interfaces team
 

The overall objective of this theme is to produce knowledge syntheses on key issues in the conservation of Mediterranean wetlands in order to support and provide clear, up-to-date scientific evidence to decision-makers, civil society, networks of wetland managers or NGOs in their efforts towards the sustainable management of wetlands.

The theme is composed of three axes:

  • Monitor and evaluate conservation policies;
  • Strengthen the capacities of civil society;
  • Supporting stakeholders towards sustainable management of Mediterranean lagoons.

Our Support Team

In addition to those on our team of scientists, many other employees participate in the daily management of the Tour du Valat and its estate: