BIODIVERSITY AND LAND-USE IMPACTS ON TROPICAL ECOSYSTEM FUNCTION (BALI)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Aberdeen
Department Name: Inst of Biological and Environmental Sci

Abstract

Anthropogenic disturbance and land-use change in the tropics is leading to irrevocable changes in biodiversity and substantial shifts in ecosystem biogeochemistry. Yet, we still have a poor understanding of how human-driven changes in biodiversity feed back to alter biogeochemical processes. This knowledge gap substantially restricts our ability to model and predict the response of tropical ecosystems to current and future environmental change. There are a number of critical challenges to our understanding of how changes in biodiversity may alter ecosystem processes in the tropics; namely: (i) how the high taxonomic diversity of the tropics is linked to ecosystem functioning, (ii) how changes in the interactions among trophic levels and taxonomic groups following disturbance impacts upon functional diversity and biogeochemistry, and (iii) how plot-level measurements can be used to scale to whole landscapes. We have formed a consortium to address these critical challenges to launch a large-scale, replicated, and fully integrated study that brings together a multi-disciplinary team with the skills and expertise to study the necessary taxonomic and trophic groups, different biogeochemical processes, and the complex interactions amongst them.

To understand and quantify the effects of land-use change on the activity of focal biodiversity groups and how this impacts biogeochemistry, we will: (i) analyse pre-existing data on distributions of focal biodiversity groups; (ii) sample the landscape-scale treatments at the Stability of Altered Forest Ecosystems (SAFE) Project site (treatments include forest degradation, fragmentation, oil palm conversion) and key auxiliary sites (Maliau Basin - old growth on infertile soils, Lambir Hills - old growth on fertile soils, Sabah Biodiversity Experiment - rehabilitated forest, INFAPRO-FACE - rehabilitated forest); and (iii) implement new experiments that manipulate key components of biodiversity and pathways of belowground carbon flux.

The manipulations will focus on trees and lianas, mycorrhizal fungi, termites and ants, because these organisms are the likely agents of change for biogeochemical cycling in human-modified tropical forests. We will use a combination of cutting-edge techniques to test how these target groups of organisms interact each other to affect biogeochemical cycling. We will additionally collate and analyse archived data on other taxa, including vertebrates of conservation concern. The key unifying concept is the recognition that so-called 'functional traits' play a key role in linking taxonomic diversity to ecosystem function. We will focus on identifying key functional traits associated with plants, and how they vary in abundance along the disturbance gradient at SAFE. In particular, we propose that leaf functional traits (e.g. physical and chemical recalcitrance, nitrogen content, etc.) play a pivotal role in determining key ecosystem processes and also strongly influence atmospheric composition. Critically, cutting-edge airborne remote sensing techniques suggest it is possible to map leaf functional traits, chemistry and physiology at landscape-scales, and so we will use these novel airborne methods to quantify landscape-scale patterns of forest degradation, canopy structure, biogeochemical cycling and tree distributions. Process-based mathematical models will then be linked to the remote sensing imagery and ground-based measurements of functional diversity and biogeochemical cycling to upscale our findings over disturbance gradients.

Planned Impact

Beneficiaries will include the policy makers associated with the development of REDD+ schemes (including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change [UNCCC] and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [IPCC]), forest managers at company and State level, the oil palm industry, academic institutions in Malaysia, and the conservation sector globally.

REDD+ policy: Results from this project will provide information of key relevance to the management and monitoring of degraded forests within REDD+ schemes. In particular this work will quantify the impacts of habitat degradation and change on belowground biodiversity and processes and develop a series of robust indicators, which can be developed into effective monitoring strategies to assess forest degradation and recovery. REDD+ policy is of particular importance given UNFCCC COP negotiations in Doha in December 2012. The UNFCCC are active in developing guidance for REDD+, and REDD+ is one of the hottest topics in development of the IPCC chapter on Agriculture Forestry and Other Land Use.

Forest Managers: Belowground processes are key to sustainable forest management. The development of user-friendly survey techniques will allow timber industries to assess the impacts of existing management options more fully. |In particular the project will allow assessment of key strategies for aiding forest recovery; crucial for sustainable timber production in the region.

Oil palm industry: The increasing focus of the global oil palm industry on corporate social responsibility and the development of more sustainable management practices through schemes such as the RSPO, has precipitated a growing need for robust monitoring of belowground processes associated with sustainable oil palm production. The indicators developed in this project will be key to this and will facilitate the monitoring of these processes in a plantation context for the first time.

Academic institutions in Malaysia: Despite a growing body of biodiversity research in the region, the biodiversity of Southeast Asia, particularly that of belowground components, remains relatively little studied. Such a knowledge gap can act as a barrier for continued ecological research in the region. This project will provide detailed information on species data for belowground systems.

Conservation sector: The growth of tropical agriculture represents the major threat to biodiversity globally. However, conservation organizations are sometimes hampered in their ability to converse with government policy makers, through lack of detailed information about the impacts of habitat change. This project will fill a knowledge gap in this area and provide detailed data on the impacts of habitat change on below ground biodiversity and ecosystem processes.
 
Title BALI logo 
Description Designed and contributed ideas towards the BALI consortium logo. 
Type Of Art Image 
Year Produced 2014 
Impact Promoting the project and its aims. 
URL http://www.bali.hmtf.info
 
Title HMTF film 
Description A short film specifically focusing on the Malaysian part of the Human Modified Tropical Forests Programme (i.e. incorporating the work of the BALI, LOMBOK and SAFE projects) has been developed and is now available on the HMTF website (www.hmtf.info). 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact The video has helped to showcase our research and objectives to the general public and to raise awareness. 
URL http://www.hmtf.info
 
Description BALI plant trait campaign: The BALI plant trait field campaign started in July 2015 and was completed six months later in December 2015. The campaign, led by Dr Sabine Both, successfully measured 32 functional plant traits on 651 trees in eight 1ha permanent forest plots: in the Maliau Basin Conservation Area (MBCA, two plots) and the Danum Valley Conservation Area (DVCA, two plots), and four plots embedded in the Kalabakan Forest Reserve (SAFE project). In 2017 all laboratory analyses of plant material were finalised, with leaf nutrient concentrations being measured at the Forest Research Centre Sepilok and leaf isotope concentrations determined in the University of Aberdeen, UK. In addition, tree species identification has been completed in all 1ha permanent plots.

The first scientific manuscript discussing the effects of logging disturbance and soil properties on plant functional trait expression has been submitted to the journal Ecology Letters (on 08/03/2018). This manuscript, with co-authors Dr Noreen Majalap-Lee and researchers from Lancaster University, University of Oxford and The University of Manchester, is shedding light on the shift from structural and persistence traits in unlogged tree communities to greater trait values that drive carbon capture and growth in selectively logged forest. This observation is crucial for the prediction and likely implications for ecosystem functions across human-modified tropical forests in Sabah. In another manuscript, we will analyse and compare traits of leaves that have been affected by herbivory. During the BALI plant trait campaign we quantified the herbivory damage on leaves and subsequently analysed the chemical composition of affected leaves. We hypothesise that tree individuals may relocate their leaf nutrients and secondary components in response to damage by herbivores. This study will give insight into herbivore load in old-growth and logged forests and potential consequences for nutrient cycling.

Masters student, Mrs Palasiah Jotan, at the School of International Tropical Forestry, Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) has been analysing wood anatomical traits on samples derived from the BALI plant trait campaign. She has measured a wide selection of anatomical traits, for example vessel area (determined by the average of cross-sectional area of all vessel lumens excluding vessel walls in the wedge-shaped transect), vessel diameter, hydraulically weighted diameter, vessel number per area, and the vessel area to number ratio. These traits will be compared for trees in old-growth and selectively logged forests in order to discuss their changes in the light of land use change in Sabah.

In addition to the study of plant functional traits, we currently are preparing a publication to describe the tree species composition in old-growth and selectively logged forest communities. We expect a shift in species occurrences based on their functional traits and interaction with environmental conditions following logging.
Microclimate dynamics and venation networks:

Work investigating microclimate dynamics in disturbed tropical forests has been completed. The work was approved for submission by the Sabah Biodiversity Council (SaBC) and is now under consideration for publication at Global Change Biology. Research investigating venation networks and the drivers of their geometrical variation in Malaysian tree species is still in progress. We have finished preparing high resolution images of all of our samples and have finished hand-tracing representative areas of each image. We are now almost finished developing neural network methods for automatically tracing the remainder of each image with collaborators at Oxford (Hao Xu, Mark Fricker). We hope to publish a methods paper on this topic in the coming 2-3 months, and a paper on the ecology of these species in the next 3-5 months.

Hyperspectral data: Airborne hyperspectral data was obtained over the key BALI sites and the Sepilok Forest Reserve in a series of flights in 2014 as part of the BALI Remote Sensing component led by Prof. David Coomes at the University of Cambridge. While several technical challenges had to be overcome before the data could be used for scientific analysis, we have now finished all the necessary pre-processing steps and are actively working on upscaling field measurements to landscape-level analysis. Dr. Tommaso Jucker, who was previously employed as a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant for the BALI project, has recently completed analysis looking at topographic controls of forest structure in the Sepilok Forest Reserve. A manuscript is currently in review. Work led by Dr. Tom Swinfield builds upon the traits campaign dataset to look at forest-wide responses to disturbance across Danum, Maliau and SAFE. The analysis is at an advanced stage and a manuscript is being prepared. He is also working directly with Dr David Milowdowski (University of Edinburgh) and a number of PhD students under the supervision of Dr Matthew Struebig to develop high definition habitat metrics to predict animal response to forest degradation. A methodological paper is in review and a number of other projects are at an analytical stage. PhD student Boris Bongalov has been utilising the airborne dataset to look at drivers of community dissimilarity in the Sepilok Forest Reserve, the analysis is complete and a manuscript is being prepared.

The LiDAR data obtained in 2014 over the SAFE landscape has also been used to develop carbon prediction models in oil palm plantations. On that note, we have published a paper in August 2017 comparing different methods to estimate carbon density in terms of accuracy. PhD student Matheus Nunes is now working on a project using repeat LiDAR to track the dynamics in the SAFE landscape to understand human impacts on carbon emissions. The project has been carried out in cooperation with the Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO) led by Dr. Greg Asner, who has provided a 2016 LiDAR data over the same landscape. The repeat measurements allow us to investigate how selective logging and fragmentation contribute to carbon balance and develop insights on how to reduce carbon emissions from forest conversion to oil palm agriculture. The analyses are at an advanced stage and a manuscript is being prepared.

Assessment of the impact of selective logging on soil microbial diversity and function: We are studying the effects of land degradation (deforestation and conversion of forest to oil palm plantation) on soil microbial diversity and function. A soil survey was carried out across plots at SAFE, Maliau Basin and Danum Valley. Soil samples were analysed for physical and chemical properties and microbial community structure was determined using next generation sequencing techniques. These data have been analysed in combination with plant traits metrics and a publication is currently in preparation explaining observed patterns in community structure. Variation in soil bacterial communities appeared to be driven predominantly by soil chemistry whilst ectomycorrhizal and saprophytic fungal communities were shaped by a combination of variation in plant traits and soil chemistry. Logged forests had a significantly lower species richness of ectomycorrhizal fungi reflecting the removal of dipterocarp trees, which associate almost exclusively with ectomycorrhizae. To test whether these changes in belowground community had an impact upon litter decomposition process rates a controlled reciprocal litter transplant experiment was conducted in the laboratory. This suggested that there is functional redundancy in terms of litter decomposition as no differences were detected in decomposition rates between forest types. Neither was there evidence to support the "home field advantage" hypothesis that states that communities should be specialised to decompose litter derived from their home environment.

The Borneo rainforest girdling experiment: responses in structure and ecophysiology: The overall aim of the BALI Girdling research project is to assess how the termination of the transport of sugars and defoliation alter forest ecosystem functioning and structure using girdling as a treatment approach. The experiment was conducted in an area destined to be converted into oil palm plantation and targeted trees were girdled by removing a strip of bark (including cambium and phloem, but leaving the xylem intact) from around the tree trunk to stop sugar transport to the belowground zone of the trees (i.e. roots and soil, rhizosphere). Pre- and post- girdling sampling work has been completed and our researchers are analysing the data for publication. PhD student, Muhammad Firdaus Karim's research focuses on the impact of reduced plants' root derived carbon (photosynthates) via girdling treatment on nitrous oxide (N2O) emission and soil nitrogen pool at genus level i.e. between Macaranga and Parashorea species. Soil cores placed around targeted trees were labelled with 15-potassium nitrate (15KNO3) at 20 atom %, giving a unique isotopic 15N-deposition signature rate of 10 kg ha-1 to study the N-mineralisation pathway between the two genera. Here, we hypothesised that reduced fresh tree roots' labile carbon supply to soil will result in a reduction of nitrifiers and denitrifiers activity, shifting the dynamics of N-mineralisation pathway thus reducing soil N2O emissions.

Impacts of logging and forest restoration on soil biodiversity and function in Borneo: All soil physical and chemical data have been obtained from FRC for assessing differences in soil properties between forest and gap plots. Hemispherical photographs have been analysed for relative canopy cover in order to assess canopy gap structure in relation to soil characteristics. PLFA laboratory analysis is also now complete and awaiting statistical analysis. Preliminary analysis of newly-obtained soil microbial DNA sequencing data from gap survey (alpha diversity and community similarity of 16S and ITS amplicons for bacteria and eukaryotes) have found differences in the composition of fungal communities between treatments. Sam Robinson is currently undertaking field work (March 2018) for collection of environmental data and litterbags. The protocol for a controlled drought (drying-rewetting) incubation experiment is now finalised, including addition of 13C labelled glucose for investigating priming effects. A 21-day experiment is to be carried out in Lancaster during April-May once fresh cores have been collected from logging gap survey plots in SAFE B North and B South. Statistical analysis of all soil biological, chemical and physical characteristics and vegetation/environmental metrics is due to commence April 2018 in order to prepare the data for publication before the end of 2018.

Ant & termite exclusion experiment, Maliau: Continued collaboration with the BALI Ant and Termite research team is ongoing with the aim of producing a synthetic paper on the effects of ecosystem engineers on soil microbiome. Hyphal volume measurements have been calculated for all plots for use in structural equation modelling.

Soil microbial communities and function in restored forest: A soil survey is to be carried out at the INFAPRO restoration site during March 2018, and in adjacent unrestored and primary forest for comparison. Sampling is to be spatially explicit for distance decay analysis of soil microbial community turnover across multiple scales. Soil samples will be transported to UK for biological, chemical and physical analysis in April-July 2018.
Exploitation Route We hope support the dissemination of project results by:
Supporting public outreach activities and skill transfer to local institutions and wider audiences through workshops, educational events and training in the lab and field.
Dissemination of information via our project website, film documentaries, at local and international conferences and through publications in scientific journals.
Provide detailed feedback to stakeholders, including landholders, relevant industries and local and national governmental departments.
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Environment,Government, Democracy and Justice

URL http://bali.hmtf.info/
 
Description PUBLIC POLICY Members of the BALI consortium have also contributed to the development of sustainable management strategies for the oil palm industry. For example, PIs Burslem and Teh provided expert opinions, input, and advice on a technical report for the RSPO which helps define best-practice guidelines for conserving carbon in oil palm landscapes and mitigating climate change. The final report is entitled "The High Carbon Stock Science Study: Independent Report from the Technical Committee." PUBLIC OUTREACH Researchers from BALI have participated in a number of public outreach events, including presentations to the general public, primary and secondary schools, and training (capacity building) events within their host countries. For example, BALI team members were involved in a Nature Live Public Lecture at the Natural History Museum, open day events throughout the UK (e.g. Doors Open Day in Aberdeen, NERC UnEarthed in Edinburgh), guest lectures at primary and secondary schools in Malaysia and elsewhere, and training of local research assistants and volunteers on invertebrate identification and dung beetle sampling (BALI and LOMBOK). MULTIMEDIA Members of the BALI consortium, LOMBOK, and SEARRP have jointly produced a short film specifically focusing on the Malaysian part of the HMTF programme to showcase our research and objectives. Educational videos on biogeochemical cycling, mammals, invertebrate dispersal, leeches, dung beetles, and birds are also being developed. The films are geared towards the general public and will be displayed on the HMTF consortia websites and disseminated via social networks (www.hmtf.info).
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Agriculture, Food and Drink,Education,Environment
Impact Types Societal,Economic

 
Description Training of local research assistants the methodology of dung beetle sampling and invertebrate identification
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
 
Description Leverhulme
Amount £300,000 (GBP)
Organisation The Leverhulme Trust 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 10/2020
 
Description Malaysia Palm Oil Board Research Grant
Amount RM6,520,000 (MYR)
Organisation Malaysian Palm Oil Board 
Sector Public
Country Malaysia
Start 07/2014 
End 06/2017
 
Description NERC Do riparian zones conserve biodiversity and ecofunctioing in oil palm-dominated landscapes
Amount £607,678 (GBP)
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start  
 
Title Human Modified Tropical Forests Programme Data Management 
Description Database for archiving of metadata across the HMTF programme. As of February 2017, Primary meta datasets have been identified. In total, there are approx. 82 for LOMBOK, 69 for ECOFOR and 134 for BALI 
Type Of Material Data handling & control 
Year Produced 2016 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Central storage of metadata documents for (i) Tracking by DM of metadata information completeness (ii) Ease of metadata update by researchers (iii) Increasing awareness of available datasets between research projects The HMTF data management database can now identify datasets with environmental data across the three consortia, increasing the opportunity for collaboration between research groups and modellers. The second phase of the programme where DOI's are needed to support papers for journals (i.e. datasets needing to be uploaded to EIDC) has started. The HMTF programme website has been updated with relevant information and links to support researchers through this (available at www.hmtf.info/data/). 
URL http://hmtf.info/data
 
Description Antarctic Circumnavigation Experiment 
Organisation Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL)
Department Swiss Polar Institute
Country Switzerland 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We provided an instrument to measure isoprene automatically during a circus-Antarctic cruise. This novel instrument was developed by us in the NERC BALI project and was operated byron-specialist staff. Over 60 days of measurements will be made in all in a region where few measurements have been previously made.
Collaborator Contribution Access to the research ship was provided for 4-5 months. A wide range of instruments were also on board which are looking at new particle formation over the Southern Ocean
Impact No scientific outputs yet.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Forest Research Centre, Sepilok, Malaysia 
Organisation Saebo
Country United States 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution BALI consortium research project.
Collaborator Contribution Use of facilities and expertise in analytical chemistry including support for research permit applications to the Sabah Biodiversity Council.
Impact Research is underway.
Start Year 2014
 
Description ITBC, Universiti Malaysia Sabah 
Organisation Malaysian University of Sabah
Country Malaysia 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Research for the BIODIVERSITY AND LAND-USE IMPACTS ON TROPICAL ECOSYSTEM FUNCTION (BALI) project.
Collaborator Contribution Use of facilities and expertise including support for research permit applications to the Sabah Biodiversity Council.
Impact Still active
Start Year 2014
 
Description Institute for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ITBC), Malaysia 
Organisation Malaysian University of Sabah
Country Malaysia 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Research expertise and training of researchers in the field and laboratory.
Collaborator Contribution Laboratory facilities and research expertise including support for research permit applications to the Sabah Biodiversity Council.
Impact 4 postgraduate studentships awarded to scholars through Universiti Malaysia Sabah, working in collaboration with the SAFE project and SEARRP. Research is underway.
Start Year 2013
 
Description Palm oil plantation measurements 
Organisation Malaysian Palm Oil Board
Country Malaysia 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We provided one of our new isoprene instruments which was used by UKM staff to make measurements for 6 weeks in a palm oil plantation operated by the MPOB
Collaborator Contribution UKM provided the personnel to operate the instrument and are leading on the interpretation. MPOB provided the site and local support.
Impact None yet
Start Year 2016
 
Description Palm oil plantation measurements 
Organisation The National University of Malaysia (MUM)
Country Malaysia 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We provided one of our new isoprene instruments which was used by UKM staff to make measurements for 6 weeks in a palm oil plantation operated by the MPOB
Collaborator Contribution UKM provided the personnel to operate the instrument and are leading on the interpretation. MPOB provided the site and local support.
Impact None yet
Start Year 2016
 
Description The South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP) 
Organisation The Royal Society
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Our scientists have been closely working with the Royal Society Southeast Asia Rainforest Research Programme (SEARRP) to recruit and train local research assistants and students in the laboratory and field. We are also working closely with the Assistant Director of SEARRP for Science and Knowledge Exchange, to help with dissemination of project results to relevant stakeholders.
Collaborator Contribution Research assistance and operational support in the field including training.
Impact Studentships and further funding applications.
Start Year 2010
 
Description "Introduction to the BALI Consortium - Biodiversity And Land-use Impacts on Tropical Ecosystem Function" at the University of Malaysia Sabah 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Talked encourage collaboration among Malaysian academics/researchers and UK academics.

New collaborative relationships developed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description "Introduction to the BALI Consortium - Biodiversity And Land-use Impacts on Tropical Ecosystem Function" at the Malaysian Palm Oil Board in Kuala Lumpur 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Talk lead to in-depth discussion.

Strengthening of existing research collaborations
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Aberdeen University Doors Open Day 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact University of Aberdeen opened its doors to members of the public, 9th September 2017. Following last year's success, BALI researchers set up another 'tropical forests' themed stall to help showcase our work and talk to visitors about our research. We displayed photos from our field trips as well as tropical seeds, insect and animal specimens. We had ~1400 visitors throughout the day including visitors to the Zoology Museum and Biodiversity Centre. Main impact: Knowledge exchange
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Ants dominate rainforest clean-up articles 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact The BALI project's ant and termite work was featured in nature's research highlights. The article titled "Ants dominate rainforest clean-up" show that more than half of scavenging on forest floors is done by insects. This work was published in the Journal of Animal Ecology and covered by the Daily Mail, Phys.org and The Daily Ant. Main impact: public engagement and knowledge exchange.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-017-02500-x
 
Description Biodiversity and Land-use Impacts on Tropical Ecosystem Function, Chicheley 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Gave a talk titled Biodiversity And Land-use impacts on Tropical Ecosystem Function at the Royal Society Southeast Asia Rainforest Research Programme Meeting, Chicheley Hall, Chicheley.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description British Ecological Society Annual meeting, Liverpool, 11-14th December 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact BALI researchers, David Coomes, Tommaso Jucker, Louise Ashton, Sam Robinson and Stephanie Law gave presentations at the British Ecological Society Meeting in Liverpool, 11-14th December 2016.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Consultancy report on inventory methods for estimating carbon storage in High Carbon stock forests 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Contribution to an evaluation and summary of methodologies for estimating carbon storage in High Carbon Stock (HCS) forests under the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, an industry-led body seeking to improve the environmental and social sustainability of oil palm production.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.simedarby.com/sustainability/clients/simedarby_sustainability/assets/contentMS/img/templa...
 
Description Convenor, Annual Conference of the European Society for Tropical Ecology 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Co-convener for the session Human-modified tropical forests - Impacts of forest degradation and biodiversity loss on tropical ecosystem functioning at the Annual Conference of the Society for Tropical Ecology, Gottingen, Germany
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.soctropecol.eu
 
Description Convenor, Annual Conference of the European Society for Tropical Ecology 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Convened a session on Human-modified tropical forests - Impacts of forest degradation and biodiversity loss on tropical ecosystem functioning. The aim of the session was to explore what is known about the linkages between forest degradation and biodiversity loss, and investigate the consequences of these concomitant phenomena for ecosystem processes and trace gas exchange. Knowledge gaps and means of addressing them, including inter-disciplinary or multi-disciplinary modes of problem solving were discussed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.soctropecol.eu
 
Description Educational film 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The BALI consortium has teamed up with the South East Asia Rainforest Research Programme (SEARRP) and the LOMBOK project to produce a joint film specifically focusing on the Malaysian part of the HMTF programme to showcase our research and objectives. The is geared towards the general public and will be displayed on the HMTF consortia websites and disseminated via social networks (www.hmtf.info).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Friends of Borneensis, 11-13th March 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact BALI researchers, Hannah Griffiths, Louise Ashton and Terhi Riutta and LOMBOK researchers Eleanor Slade and Sol Milne gave talks at the Friends Of Borneensis, an educational event for local secondary school pupils organised by the Institute for Tropical Biology and Conservation at Universiti Malaysia Sabah, 11-13 March 2016. During Friends of Borneensis, students learn different aspects of rainforest ecology and field-based ecological methods, including collecting insects, flying drones and tree climbing skills.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Guest speaker at United World College of Southeast Asia 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Guest speaker. Gave a talk titled "Day in the life of a tropical ecologist".
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description International Conference of Heart of Borneo, 8-9 November 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact LOMBOK and BALI team members attended the International Conference of Heart of Borneo, 8th - 9th November, organised by the Sabah Forestry Department. Eleanor Slade helped organise a science-policy workshop with South East Asia Rainforest Research Programme (SEARRP) at the meeting and ran a break-out group on science-policy interface for riparian areas. Jake Bicknell led a break-out group for oil palm high conservation value areas.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.heartofborneo.org
 
Description International Year of Soils (seminar in Aberdeen) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Presentation to about 50 trainee school teachers on the subject of soils and my research, connected the International Year of Soils
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Interview for NERC Planet Earth Magazine 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Paul Hallett and I were interview by Julia Horton in the lead-up to the NERC UnEarthed Event in Edinburgh (17-19 November 2017) on the topic of how our consumption of tropical food and food products impacts natural ecosystems, agricultural activity, and rural livelihoods in tropical countries.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.nerc.ac.uk/planetearth/stories/1879/
 
Description Introduction to the BALI consortium at the Science@SAFE 2014 meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact Presentation on the Impacts of biodiversity loss and land-use change on biogeochemical cycling and trace gas fluxes across a forest degradation gradient in northern Borneo. The presentation gave an overview of BALI consortium activities and an update on current research progress. A HMTF programme management team meeting was also held at this event.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.safeproject.net/workshop/schedule.php
 
Description NERC UnEarthed, Edinburgh, 17-20 November 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact University of Aberdeen Researchers and members of the BALI project held an exhibit at the NERC Unearthed event at Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh, 17th - 20th November 2017. The theme of our stall focused on soil health and food security in tropical regions. We wanted to show how what we eat affects the world and how our research may tackle these issues. The day was hugely successful and we are planning to set up our exhibit again for Climate Week Fun Day at Hazelhead Park, Aberdeen, 24th March.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Nature Live public outreach event at the Natural History Museum 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Researchers Hannah Griffiths and Louise Ashton participated in a Nature Live public outreach event at the Natural History Museum, 27th January 2016, where they gave a talk about their research and displayed some of the invertebrates they collected and identified in the field.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Nature Live talk to NHM visitors 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Presenting an overview of work to the general public
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Provide expert scientific input on the High Carbon Stock (HCS) Science Study by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact David Burslem and Yit And Teh provided were asked to advise and provide feedback on a report commissioned by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) called "HCS Science Study: Draft Synthesis Report". This document, prepared by an independent scientific panel and co-chaired by Jonathon Porritt, aimed to provide expert advice and guidance to the oil palm industry on how to sustainably manage oil palm plantations and the surrounding landscapes for carbon, with the wider goal of offsetting or mitigating carbon losses from plantation development. The input provided by Burslem and Teh led to the production of a final report ("High Carbon Stock Science Study: Independent Report from the Technical Committee"), which will be used to guide the planning and management practices of the oil palm industry, and support the RSPO in reaching its sustainability and climate change mitigation targets.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.simedarby.com/sustainability/clients/simedarby_sustainability/assets/contentMS/img/templa...
 
Description REDD+ Support and Capacity Building Meeting 7-8 August 2017, Sabah Forestry Department 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Initial meeting with policy makers and practitioners in the Sabah Forestry Department and conservation-based NGOs to discuss how the HMTF Programme and BALI Consortium can support and help develop the skills and knowledge base in Sabah to conduct REDD+ activities
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Research seminar talk at the National University of Singapore 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Gave a talk titled Soil-atmosphere trace gas exchange in the tropical Andes at a Research Seminar at the National University of Singapore.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Research seminar talk at the University of Oxford, UK 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Gave a talk titled Impacts of soil methane and nitrous oxide dynamics on ecosystem climate forcing at a Research Seminar, University of Oxford.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description SEARRP Science Meeting, 20-21 April 2017, University of Cambridge 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact BALI and LOMBOK researchers attended and gave presentations at the SEARRP Science meeting, 20-21 April, University of Cambridge. The second day included breakout group discussions to identify core objectives and experimental ideas for a new forest restoration project in Aceh, Indonesia. The main impact/outcome of this event were requests and opportunoties to get further involved in the project and knowledge exchange.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description SEnSOR meeting, Royal Over-Seas League, London, May 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Members from BALI and LOMBOK attended a meeting with the Socially and Environmentally Sustainable Oil Palm Research (SEnSOR) project at the Royal Over-Seas League, London, 27 May 2016. The aim of the meeting was to discuss possible SEnSOR-linked research (new, existing, and expanded) that could be funded in order to test the impact of RSPO certification. BALI and LOMBOK each submitted 3 research proposals to the committee for consideration.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description University Malaysia Sabah, Current Topics in Conservation module for undergraduate students 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Undergraduate students
Results and Impact BALI researchers Boris Bongalov and Terhi Riutta and LOMBOK researcher Eleanor Slade gave talks to undergraduate Conservation students at University Malaysia Sabah (UMS), in February and April 2016. This was part of a module entitled "Current Topics in Conservation" which aimed to provide students with examples of real-life research that applied to concepts they studied during the course of their degree.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description University of Aberdeen Doors Open Day 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact University of Aberdeen opened its doors to members of the public, 10th September 2016. We set up a 'tropical forests' themed stall to help showcase our work and talk to visitors about our research in Malaysia. We displayed photos from our trips as well as tropical seeds, insect and animal specimens. We had 453 visitors throughout the day including visitors to the Zoology museum and Biodiversity Centre.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Workshops at the Science@SAFE 2014 meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 3 workshops were held at the Science@SAFE meeting including 1) an overview of EarthCape platform, 2) Linking plot and satellite data 3) Soil trace gas flux measurements.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014