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The oceans cover over 70% of our planet. They are host to a biodiversity of tremendous wealth. Its preservation is now a global priority featuring in several international conventions and a confirmed objective of European policies and national strategies. Understanding the dynamics and the uses of the marine biodiversity is a genuine scientific challenge. Fourteen international experts have got together and identified five priority research themes to address the problem, based on analysing the state of knowledge.
Originally published in French by Éditions Quæ.
The importance of marine biodiversity
The impacts of human activities on marine biodiversity
The strategic values of research
Status and trends
How many marine species are there?
The drive to identify new species
The "taxonomic impediment"
Species under pressure
Ecosystems under pressure: the deep sea
Spatial patterning of characteristics
Conceptual frameworks for relationships between biodiversity and human societies. Choice of model framework
Biodiversity as a macroscopic descriptor in the European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD)
Drivers of changes in biodiversity and its uses
Environmental drivers: a working framework
Integrated scenarios and policies
Policies and decision support
Quantitative methods, models and integrated assessment
The framework: environmental research
Human dimensions of research
Developing modelling: a summarising approach
Abbreviations and acronyms
Group of experts
Philippe Goulletquer, PhD in biological oceanography, is in charge of issues of marine and coastal biodiversity at Ifremer. He is a member of the scientific council on Natural heritage & biodiversity. Philippe Gros, a highly qualified professor of biological sciences at the Ecole normale superieure, joined Ifremer in 1984. He was director of Living resources there. Gilles Boeuf, holding a PhD in developmental biology, is a professor at Pierre & Marie Curie university and President of the National museum of natural history (MNHN). Jacques Weber, an economist and anthropologist, research director at the Cirad, lecturer at the Ecole des hautes etudes and Pierre & Marie Curie university, is vice-chairman of the French committee for Man and biosphere.