El proyecto FORCE, acción Marie Curie IF, se inició el pasado 1 de octubre

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El proyecto FORCE “Molecular basis underlying the QTL responsible for the genetic control of flowering time in chickpea: an integrative approach” comenzó el 1 de octubre y tendrá una duración de 24 meses. El proyecto está financiado por la comisión Europea (160 932,48 €) por medio de una acción Marie Skłodowska-Curie-IF gracias al programa marco Horizonte 2020, siendo Jose V. Die Ramón (Departamento Genética – ETSIAM) el investigador responsable.

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El proyecto WEDISTRICT comenzó el pasado 1 de octubre

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El proyecto WEDISTRICT «Smart and local reneWable Energy DISTRICT heating and cooling solutions for sustainable living» comenzó el 1 de octubre y tendrá una duración de 42 meses, con un coste total 19.273.573 euros de los que la Comisión Europea aportará 14.972.852 euros gracias al programa marco Horizonte 2020.

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BOOST

11:50 hrs. 0 Comentarios

Building social and emotional skills to BOOST resilience in children and young people

It is widely documented that social and emotional learning (SEL) programs are effective in promoting mental health and wellbeing in children and young people. However, a number of shortcomings of these programs have been identified, which may compromise their sustainability and long-term effect.It is widely documented that social and emotional learning (SEL) programs are effective in promoting mental health and wellbeing in children and young people.

The BOOST project will go beyond state of the art of current SEL programmes and develop an approach to integrate SEL in teachers’ pedagogical skills and classroom interaction and a tool for organisational development to facilitate implementation and uptake of the approach in classrooms, schools and among school owners (the BOOST approach).

The development will involve the young themselves, as well as school owners, teachers, policy makers and a multidisciplinary team of researchers from fields of education, public health, psychology and economics. This is to ensure the relevance, acceptability and organisational and political anchoring of the intervention, as well as to increase the potential for scale-up and sustainability of the intervention locally, regionally, nationally and internationally.

The end users of the BOOST approach are schools and teachers, but the target population are children and young people. To ensure the relevance of the BOOST approach in a wide range of European contexts, the approach will be developed, implemented and tested in three diverse European settings, Poland, Spain and Norway. The BOOST approach will be evaluated for its short-term and long-term effects on children’s social and emotional well-being, as well as for its economic benefits

General objectives

The overall aim of the BOOST project will be achieved through the following strategic objectives:

  1. A formative study will secure the cultural and contextual foundation and will provide the basis for the BOOST approach. The study will be a combination of available evidence of SEL programmes and a study of the various cultural, contextual and political educational environments where the approach will be implemented.
  2. BOOST will design an organisational and pedagogical approach based on findings from the formative study. The approach will then undergo an iterative consultation process in each of the three countries, and revised according to the experience and findings from this process. This process will involve key stakeholders (school owners, teachers, policy makers and researchers). The approach will strengthen SEL based teaching skills and understanding and facilitate its organisational uptake.
  3. The BOOST approach will be refined and evaluated in real school environments in at least nine schools in three European countries (Poland, Spain and Norway).
  4. The long-term and short-term effectiveness of the BOOST approach on children’s social and emotional well-being will be evaluated.
  5. An economic evaluation of the BOOST approach will be conducted in order to inform policy choices and provide evidence of economic feasibility of possible scalability as well as evidence of cost-savings in years, of adolescents and young adults, in relation to the increase of social and emotional well-being achieved by BOOST.
  6. Close collaboration with beneficiaries/ target population (children and young people), end-users (teachers and schools) and key stakeholders (municipalities/ local governments) throughout the entire project period. Together with targeted dissemination, this will ensure the relevance, ownership and full exploitation of the BOOST approach and its results.

Role of the University of Cordoba

  • To ensure and oversee the implementation of the BOOST approach in real school environments in three European countries.
  • To measure the short-term and study the potential long term effectiveness of the BOOST approach on children’s social and emotional well-being.


Investigadoras Principales: Eva María Romera Félix y Olga Gómez Ortíz

Correo electrónico de contacto: eva.romera@uco.es y olga.gomez@uco.es

Página web del proyecto: www.boostproject.eu



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BOND

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Bringing Organisations and Network Development to higher levels in the farming sector in Europe

Project ‘BOND’ is centred on the implementation of reaching higher levels of organisation and networking, and develop a healthier, more productive, and more harmonious farming sector in Europe for the long term.

The ultimate goal is to build strong organisations and create stronger networks between farmers, between farmers organisations, and for them with policy makers, researchers, and others relevant to the networking and cooperation toward the goals: collective action for increased synergies and collaboration.

Through these new bonds, and through the tools and resources developed over the three years of the project, it can promote lasting change for the good of the farming sector and ultimately for everyone who relies on it for daily nourishment across Europe.

General objectives

Reach higher levels of organisation and networking, and develop a healthier, and more productive and harmonious farming sector in Europe for the long term

  • SO1: Draw up solutions and build bonding capital within farmer and land manager groups, ensuring cohesiveness and trust among people
  • SO2: Enable different organizations to come closer together, building bridging capital to form larger networks (value chains, cooperatives, apex bodies), understanding attitudes, weaknesses and constraints that impede collective action
  • SO3: Build linking capital, developing ties with entities with different interests and powers, including government, donors, academia, private sector, to reach a stronger position in decision-making.
  • SO4: Engage multi actors and policy makers. Design and deploy an Engagement and Dissemination

Role of the University of Cordoba

  • Organize an interregional forum with the representatives, other key actors (academia, private sector, decision-makers, CSOs etc.) and project partners and undertake the initial Training of Trainers (TOT) for 20 trainers. The 4-day TOT will develop the capacities of participants in the different topics, and will provide a basis for future processes of change within their own organizations. Participants will commit to concrete actions to be undertaken in their organizations once they have completed the TOT.
  • Identify the attitudes, weaknesses, disincentives and constraints that limit the development o collective and networking activities, in the selected countries, in different sectors, and to propose ways to overcome them, co-developing and implementing tailored capacity building to develop effective groups and help them engage in larger networks.


Investigador Principal: Mª Carmen Cuéllar Padilla

Correo electrónico de contacto: mcuellar@uco.es



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PHOTO-CY-APPs

11:33 hrs. 0 Comentarios

Photosynthesis and photoprotection regulation in marine cyanobacteria and its potential applications

Carotenoids evolved in cyanobacteria as components of membranes providing a structural role and likely influencing permeability to oxygen. Then they became complexed with proteins that enabled a great diversification in their functions to include both 1O2 quenching and light harvesting in photoprotection.

Photo-cy-apps is an ambitious project with the purpose of gaining a comprehensive understanding of the role of OCP and the new HCPs and CTDHs on photoprotection in marine cyanobacteria, with their potential application. The ecological importance of these microorganisms reinforces the relevance of this project, since the putative protecting role of OCP in a major subset of marine picocyanobacteria could be a key factor for their abundance, particularly in regions close to the surface of the ocean, subjected to high irradiances.

This project brings two research laboratories together with different and complementary expertise, the Kerfeld lab at the Plant Research Laboratory (PRL) at Michigan State University (MSU and LBNL) in the USA with the expertise in bioinformatics, biophysics and structural biology, and the Garcia-Fernandez lab at the University of Cordoba (UCO) in Spain with the expertise in physiological studies in marine cyanobacteria, to determine the role of these car-binding proteins in marine photoprotection and provide the foundation for the Fellow for her independent career after this interdisciplinary training-through research.

General objectives

1. Biochemical and structural characterization of OCP, HCPs and CTDH from marine Synechococcus and C. watsonii.

1.A. Protein production in E. coli and in cyanobacteria.

1.B. Pigment selectivity using mass spectrometry

1.C. Structural and biophysical characterization.

2. Functional characterization of OCP, HCPs and CTDH.

2.A. Non-photochemical quenching assays.

2.B. Determine the rates of O2 quenching.

2.C. Photoactivation of the different Synechococcus OCPs.

3. Discovering new functions provided by HCP-CTDH interactions.

4. Physiological characterization of OCP, HCPs and CTDH in marine cyanobacteria

4.A Determination of the gene expression and accumulation of these proteins.

4.B. Determination of the carotenoid profile in the different species.

Role of the University of Cordoba

Objectives 4A and 4B, described above, will be carried out by Dr. Domínguez-Martín in the third year of this project, at the return phase.

  • Determination of the gene expression and accumulation of these proteins. Garcia-Fernandez Lab (the lab at the return phase) has the access to many different strains of marine cyanobacteria. The gene expression and the accumulation of the OCP, HCPs and CTDH will be tested under different conditions (e.g. light, key nutrients, temperature) to complete the in vitro characterization. Two different OCP antibodies, one to Arthrospira maxima OCP and the other to Synechocystis OCP will be kindly provided from Kerfeld lab. The Garcia-Fernandez lab has a SigF mutant for Synechococcus WH7803 kindly provided by Dr. Wolfgang Hess (University of Freiburg, Germany). I will use this mutant to determine the accumulation of the proteins in comparison to the wild-type to gain insights on the regulation of these proteins.
  • Determination of the carotenoid profile in the different species. Using the mass spectrometry and the previous experience during the outgoing phase the carotenoid profile content will be determined in these cyanobacteria. They will be studied under different conditions (e.g. light, key nutrients, temperature).


Investigador Principal: José Manuel García Fernández

Correo electrónico de contacto: bb1gafej@uco.es

Página web del proyecto: http://www.uco.es/grupos/adapromet/Home.html



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CA.RA:VA.N

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Toward a CAmel tRAnsnational VAlue chaiN

Here, we propose an applied project where the foundations for a modern, effective genetic selection scheme in dromedary camels in Algeria are laid down through:

(i) standardization of dairy/meat/fertility traits phenotyping protocols

(ii) evaluation and standardization of camel identification systems

(iii) implementation of standardized animal identification and phenotyping protocols in pilot farms

(iv) establishment of a first genealogical, phenotypic and genotypic database for further valorization through detection of selection signatures, GWAS analysis, and, possibly, modelling of simple and robust embryonic design for genomic selection approaches. Among the expected impacts: increased milk/meat production, higher profit-ability of the camel sector, more structured and enforced breeders associations.

General objectives

The general aim of the project is to put in place a combined and coordinated set of inter-disciplinary measures able to generate knowledge, capacities, and practices contributing to socio-economic development of the dromedary sector and local communities.

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SustainFARM

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Innovative and sustainable intensification of integrated food and non-food systems to develop climate-resilient agro-ecosystems in Europe and beyond

SustainFARM will investigate the economic and environmental performance of the range of locally relevant IFNS across several agri-climatic zones of Europe and design innovative IFNS systems, which are resilient and climate-smart.

To improve the cost-effectiveness, different means of valorising the residual and co-products (woody components and residual wet olive cake etc.)and for multiple uses (bedding material, compost, bioenergy etc.), will be demonstrated at two SME facilities in UK and Italy and the knowledge generated will be shared through the stakeholder platforms.

Value chains and life cycle analysis of the new bio-products (torrified pellets, bio-energy and food supplements etc.) will be carried out to assess the environmental footprint of the valorization processes.

General objectives

The main objective of SustainFARM is to enhance agronomic, environmental and economic performance of integrated food and non food production systems (IFNS) by optimizing productivity and valorizing woody components, residual wastes and co-products.

IFNS are systems in which trees, crops and livestock components are integrated in different ways at different scales (plot-field-farm).

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OLIVE-MIRACLE

14:05 hrs. 0 Comentarios

ModellIng solutions for improved and Resilient mAnagement strategies for Olive tree against future CLimatE change

Over the centuries, olive trees have played an important role as one of the major sources of income and employment in Mediterranean relatively poor rain fed areas. In addition to their agro-economic value, olive cropping systems contributed – when correctly managed – to the preservation of natural resources through the maintenance of soil and the reduction of rainfall’s losses. Olive tree agro-ecosystem is therefore of enormous ecological and economic importance for most Mediterranean countries.

During the last decades, the olive farming industry is experiencing an intensification process that carried along some radical changes in its thousands-year-old agronomic practices. These are moving from low-input traditional plantation to intensified traditional plantation and highly mechanized system.

This process led to the first environmental risk caused by intensification: excessive use of water resource. The current forecasts of climate change will likely worsen this picture, and in a way that is difficult to address quantitatively

The aim of this project is to provide accurate tools to test the effectiveness of adaptation/mitigation management strategies to support long-term investment decision making on olive-tree cultivation across the Mediterranean under current and future climate. A central point will be the harmonization between farmers’ and sustainable ecosystems objectives, coupling olive tree cultivation profitability with the capacity of providing environmental services, to be reached by purposely-developed simulation tools to support decision-making

Advanced modelling approaches will be used to integrate available physiological knowledge into existing and well established modelling platforms, to assess climate change impact and evaluate mitigation/adaptation strategies by tuning agro-management factors. The analysis will be based on a consistent set of data layers, including weather, soils, and current agro-management information, and it will be conducted against present and short to mid-term future scenarios of climate change. A participatory approach with stakeholders engagement will be exploited through a reiterative process to identify/validate sustainable and economic viable olive tree management practices.

Project outputs will improve olive tree crop modelling by extending model predictive ability to capture olive crop behaviour under a wider range of conditions. This improved capability will be beneficial to properly define olive farming design and the relevant management practices, which aim at optimizing the performances of the agro-ecosystem in terms of improved positive externalities and reduced the negative ones.

When applied in a global change context, the proposed framework will be a valid benchmark on which testing the impact of adaptation strategies on both farmers income and ecosystem services providing stakeholders with knowledge input to refine or re-orient breeding programs, and design field operating machinery.

General objectives

The project is focused on the following objectives:

  • Increase the accuracy of process-based olive tree model to predict olive yields in response to higher temperature and [CO2]
  • Explore scenarios of olives production, in relation to various agromanagement options and presence of biotic/abiotic stressors
  • Evaluate quality of products and by-products under climatic scenarios
  • Develop adaptation techniques in accordance with stakeholders
  • Optimization of agronomic design.

Role of the University of Cordoba

UCO participation in this project will consist in:

  • Calibrating the OliveCan model over the different olive grove typologies and cultivars in Europe
  • Conducting simulations aimed to explore the olive farming performance under actual and future climate conditions
  • Evaluating the capacity of olive farming to respond to the changing environment
  • Establishing the required management options to improve and guarantee the capacity of olive growing industry to supply oil, but also byproducts and other environmental services.

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Climagri

14:23 hrs. 0 Comentarios

Best agricultural practices for climate change: Integrating strategies for mitigation and adaptation


This project aims contribute to the adaptation of field irrigation crops to climate change at the same time as mitigating the effects of this phenomenon.

The contribution is through the design and implementation of agronomic management systems based on the combined use of Best Managment Practices the effectiveness of which in the mitigation of climate change and the adaptation of crops to the effects thereof has been verified on an experimental level.

The management system will be implemented on a pilot scale on a demonstration farm and on small demonstration plots in the South of Spain, and on a global scale in a European Network of Demonstration Farms located in Portugal, Greece, Spain and Italy.We invite you to find out more about the project’s goals, the work to be carried out, the Network of Demonstration Farms on which the work is to take place and the results expected within the framework of the project.

General objectives

  • To demonstrate the viability of management systems based on the integration of measures for the mitigation of climate change and the adaptation of irrigation crops thereto in the Mediterranean Basin.
  • To verify the impact on a global scale of the combined mitigation-adaptation strategies adopted through the creation of a European Network of Demonstration Farms (ENDF).
  • To establish an action protocol that, based on the mitigation-adaptation strategies identified, will allow technical recommendations to be given for the adoption thereof and allow the implementation thereof to be monitored, additionally serving to check the implementation of agro-environmental measures and other programmes in relation to climate change.
  • To disseminate and transfer the experience gained and the management philosophy to other areas with similar characteristics, boosting the communication channels between research, administration and farmers and technicians,

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WABA

10:29 hrs. 0 Comentarios

Wastewater bioremediation using Algae-Bacteria consortia for rural Area

The Water bioremediation using Algae-Bacteria consortia for rural Areas project, WABA project principal goal is to develop an alternative eco-friendly and sustainable wastewater treatment process for rural areas based on a microalgae- bacteria consortium.

The potential of microalgae for bioremediation of wastewater has recently received considerable interest. Compared to physical and chemical treatment processes, algae based treatment can potentially achieve nutrient removal in a less expensive and ecologically safer way with the added benefits of resource recovery and recycling. However, no study has analyzed the energetic benefits and techno-economic limitations of this concept in the context of Euro- Mediterranean rural areas.

Bacteria-algae consortia can enjoy most of metabolic features of both components, and are potentially economically sustainable, thanks to their capacity to operate with minimal natural inputs such as sunlight, atmospheric CO2 and nutrients from wastewaters. Thus, this system can be energetically efficient, and ecologically friendly.

The project will study the relationship between algae and bacteria to understand how we can improve this partnership and maximize non-energy intensive treatments of rural wastewater, combined with the production of algae-based agronomical useful products.

General objectives

The WABA Project aims to investigate different aspects related to the development of new processes for bioremediation of wastewater in rural areas and the production of useful agronomical product by:

  • investigating the growth potential of different algae-bacteria consortiums
  • optimizing wastewater treatment through the use of novel systems
  • valorizing the biomass produced as potential plant biofertilizer
  • evaluation of the new bioremediation process by comparison with existing conventional processes
  • analysis of the socioeconomic impact of this new process in rural areas.

Role of the University of Cordoba

The UCO is in charge of the Ecophysiological study of algae-bacteria consortia.

Our objective is to investigate new consortium (artificial and originating from wastewater) and evaluate their impact on the bioremediation of the major pollutants (C, N, P and other xenobiotics) and optimize their growth condition to produce useful biomass.



Investigador Principal: Alexandra Dubini

Correo electrónico de contacto: alexandra.dubini@uco.es



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