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Agronomy 2018, 8(11), 237; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy8110237

The Role of Transdisciplinary Research for Agricultural Climate Change Adaptation Strategies

1
Department of Sociology, Mountain Agriculture Research Unit, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
2
Department of Geography, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
3
Institute of Hydrology and Water Resources Management, Leibniz Universität Hannover, 30167 Hannover, Germany
4
Institute of Meteorology, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, 1180 Vienna, Austria
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 October 2018 / Published: 24 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Abstract

While science widely acknowledges the necessity of climate change adaptation (CCA), concrete strategies for CCA by major land-use actor groups at a local level are largely missing. Immediate economic challenges often prevent the establishment of long-term collective strategies. However, collective decisions on a communal level regarding land use are crucial for CCA strategies, given the interdependencies of farming with forestry, tourism, and other economic sectors, especially in mountain areas. This paper presents inter- and trans-disciplinary learning processes, which have evolved into a project modelling the hydrological effects of combined future climate and land-use changes based on the combined scenarios of climate and socio-economic change in an Alpine valley (Brixental in Tyrol/Austria). Locally adapted scenarios illustrate future land-use changes as a result of both climate change and different socio-economic developments. The hydrological results show how an increase in the forested area reduces streamflow (as a measure of water availability) in the long term. For local stakeholders, the process demonstrated clearly the interdependence of different economic sectors and the necessity for collective action at a regional level to influence socio-economic development. Moreover, it made them aware that local decisions on future land use may influence the effects of climate change. Consistent storylines helped stakeholders to visualize a desired future and to see their scope of influence. The transdisciplinary research process allowed local stakeholders to translate the hydrological modelling results into a concrete local CCA strategy. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change adaptation; scenarios; hydrological modelling; participation; transdisciplinary research climate change adaptation; scenarios; hydrological modelling; participation; transdisciplinary research
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Schermer, M.; Stotten, R.; Strasser, U.; Meißl, G.; Marke, T.; Förster, K.; Formayer, H. The Role of Transdisciplinary Research for Agricultural Climate Change Adaptation Strategies. Agronomy 2018, 8, 237.

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