UNESCO Programme „Man and the Biosphere“
This scientific intergovernmental programme in Slovakia is very tightly connected with the Institute of the Landscape Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences since its very beginning (1971). Scientists of the Institute have been involved in the research in the Programme and the results of these scientific projects have served in environmental practice.
The MAB Programme develops the basis within the natural and social sciences for the rational and sustainable use and conservation of the resources of the biosphere and for the improvement of the overall relationship between people and their environment. It predicts the consequences of today’s actions on tomorrow’s world and thereby increases people’s ability to efficiently manage natural resources for the well-being of both human populations and the environment.
By focusing on sites internationally recognized within the World Network of Biosphere Reserves, the MAB Programme strives to:
- identify and assess the changes in the biosphere resulting from human and natural activities and the effects of these changes on humans and the environment, in particular in the context of climate change;
- study and compare the dynamic interrelationships between natural/near-natural ecosystems and socio-economic processes, in particular in the context of accelerated loss of biological and cultural diversity with unexpected consequences that impact the ability of ecosystems to continue to provide services critical for human well-being;
- ensure basic human welfare and a liveable environment in the context of rapid urbanization and energy consumption as drivers of environmental change;
- promote the exchange and transfer of knowledge on environmental problems and solutions, and to foster environmental education for sustainable development.
Since 1993 the chair of the Slovak Committee for UNESCO programme „Man and the Biosphere“ is Julius Oszlanyi, senior scientist. In this position he has several times represented the Slovak republic in all top-level bodies of the Programme in the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, has organized 10 national conferences on biosphere reserves of Slovakia, several international conferences focused on science in biosphere reserves. At present, he is member of the International Coordinating Council of the Man and the Biosphere Programme.
Activities of the Programme are focused on 4 biosphere reserves in Slovakia: Tatry Mtns, Slovak Karst, Eastern Carpathians and Polana.
Slovak Ecological Society (SEKOS) was established to support development of ecology as a science in Slovakia. The Society is developing conceptual activity in the field of ecology, it organizes, deepens and coordinates cooperation between its members active in science, schools and in practice. The Society is trying to help its members in their professional activity and contributes to improving of their professional level with particular focus on the young employees. Important part of activity of the Society is spreading and publicizing of a new findings in ecological theory and praxis. Among the important activities of the Society belongs organizing of seminars and symposiums from various fields of ecology. The Society supports teaching of ecology on universities, postgraduate studies and also ecological and environmental education on schools at all levels. The Society also evolves publishing activity – member newsletter SEKOS Bulletin is used to inform members about current events in the field of ecology and related disciplines. Monographic series Ekologické štúdie (Ecological Studies) is composed for publishing extensive contributions from various fields of ecology.
The Society evolves a significant portion of its activities via sections and working groups. The Society has currently these sections: general and theoretical ecology, population ecology, ecology of ecosystems, landscape ecology, environmental ecology, applied ecology and ecology of high mountains. Likewise it has these working groups: working group for ecosozology, working group for preparation of the Chamber of Ecologists, working group for preparation of the Terminological Dictionary of Ecology.
Slovak Ecological Society SAS may award the following prizes and decorations: Honorary Membership in SEKOS, Commemorative Medal and Award for Young Scientists.