Contributors. Acknowledgements. Section 1: Climatic and Environmental Changes. Global change and mountain regions -- an IGBP initiative for collaborative research; A. Becker, H. Bugmann. Climate variations in Italy in the last 130 years; M. Brunetti, et al. Dendroclimatic information on silver fir (Abies alba Mill.) in the northern Appennines; M. Brunetti, et al. Trends in high frequency precipitation variability in some northern Italy secular stations; M. Brunetti, et al. Climate change experiments on a glacier foreland in the Central Alps; B. Erschbamer. High mountain summits as sensitive indicators of climate change effects on vegetation patterns: the `Multi Summit-Approach' of GLORIA (Global Observation Research Initiative in Alpine Environments); H. Pauli, et al. Temperature and precipitation trends in Italy during the last century; E. Piervitali, M. Colacino. Climate and other sources of change in the St. Elias region; D.S. Slocombe. Permafrost and climate in Europe: climate change, mountain permafrost degradation and geotechnical hazard; C. Harris, D. Vonder Muhll. Thermal variations of mountain permafrost: an example of measurements since 1987 in the Swiss Alps; D. Vonder Muhll. Climate change and air quality assessment in Canadian National Parks; D. Welch. Regional clean air partnerships and the ETEAM; E.R. Hauge. 4 Additional Chapters. Section 2: Impact on the Biosphere and Hydrology. The Effects of global warming on mountain regions: a summary of the 1995 report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change; M. Beniston. Global change in respect to tendency to acidification of subarctic mountain lakes; V. Dauvalter, et al. Influence of climate, species immigration, fire, and men on forest dynamics in northern Italy, from 6000 cal. BP to today; T. Mathis, et al. Koenigia Islandica (Iceland Purslane) -- A case study of a potential indicator of climate change in the UK; B. Meatyard. Semi-objective sampling strategies as one basis for a vegetation survey; K. Reiter, et al. Simulating the impact of climate change on drought in Swiss forest stands; B. Zierl. Forecasted stability of Mediterranean evergreen species considering global change; L. Gratani, A. Bombelli. Birds as bio-indicators of long-transported lead in the alpine environment; M. Janiga. Annual estimations of ecophysiological parameters and biogenic volatile compounds (BVOCs) emissions in Citrus Sinensis (L.) Osbeck; F. Manes, et al. A multiscale study to analyse the response of vegetation to climatic conditions; F. Manes, et al. Phytotoxic ozone effect on selected plant species in a standardized experimental design; F. Manes, et al. Plant invasions in central european middle-mountains: a result of global change?; L. Soukupova. 5 Additional Chapters. Section 3: Socio-Economic Implications. Economic evaluation of Italian parks and natural areas; S. Notaro, G. Signorello. Environmental and human impact on coastal and marine protected areas in India; R. Krishnamoorthy, et al. Past climate change and the generation and persistence of species richness in a biodiversity hotspot, the Cape Flora of South Africa; G. Midgley, R. Roberts. The world network of biosphere reserves: a flexible structure for understanding and responding to global change; M. Price. The role of a global protected areas system in conserving biodiversity in the face of climate change; L. Hannah. Section 4: The Abruzzi Parks: A Case Study. The strong reduction phase of the Calderone glacier during the last two centuries: reconstruction of the variation and of the possible scenarios with GIS technologies; L. D'Alessandro, et al. Digital geomorphologic cartography of the top area of the Gran Sasso d'Italia mountain group (Central Appenine, Italy); L. D'Alessandro, et al. The late pleistocene and holocene temporary lakes in the Abruzzo parks and the Central Appennines; C. Giraudi. The travertine deposits of the upper Pescara valley (Central Abruzzi, Italy): a clue for the reconstruction of the late Quaternary Palaeoenvironmental evolution of the area; M. Lombardo, et al. The protected areas system for the conservation and for an eco-compatible development of the territory: The Maiella National Park; G. Cavuta. Environmental protection and social protection: The Sirente-Velino Regional Park; M. Fuschi. Protected areas management: an example of application in the Gran Sasso Park; L. Gratani, et al. The main invasive alien plants in the protected areas in central Italy (Abruzzo); L. Pace, F. Tammaro. The Historical and iconographic research in the reconstruction of the variation of the Calderone glacier: state of the art and perspective; M. Pecci. Numerical experiments to study the possible meteorological changes induced by the presence of a lake; B. Tomassetti, et al.