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Dr. Perry Cornelissen from Staatsbosbeheer and Dr. Albert Bleeker from RIVM recently started as Honorary Fellows at IBED.

Management of nature reserves with special attention to Nieuwland National Park

Dr. Perry Cornelissen is a researcher and advisor in ecology and nature development at Staatsbosbeheer with a lot of broad practice-related expertise on the effects of nature management. Due to the climate and biodiversity crises, both Staatsbosbeheer and IBED see the need to link more fundamental and practice-oriented research into nature development and management.

Dr. Cornelissen's profile fits perfectly with the collaboration that Staatsbosbeheer and IBED have in mind. In an environment that is rapidly changing due to climate and human use of space, land management organizations such as Staatsbosbeheer face challenging tasks when it comes to nature development and protection of biodiversity. Ecological knowledge and scientific evaluation of design and management can help make the right choices in nature management. In addition to knowledge development, sharing it is also important. With this collaboration, IBED students and researchers will have more opportunities for research and method development in areas of Staatsbosbeheer.

Dr. Cornelissen will specifically focus on Nieuwland National Park, with the nature reserves Lepelaarplassen, Oostvaardersplassen, Markerwadden, Trintelzand and the Markermeer. This National Park is located in the dynamic Amsterdam-Almere-Lelystad metropolitan region, with a lot of interaction between the ecology and wishes in the areas of living, working and recreation. The research in this area will focus on birds and their movements, future sustainability and dynamics in the still developing National Park, and the interaction between ecology and people in Nieuwland.

Nitrogen problem

Dr. Albert Bleeker is a senior researcher at RIVM. His work includes research and advice, model development at various scales and the design of measurement campaigns in the field of, among other things, the burden of nitrogen components on nature reserves. His expertise is broad and concerns nitrogen in air, soil and water.

Dr. Bleeker has coordinated several international projects and contributed to policy and policy evaluations for fertilizers and pesticides. As an independent knowledge institute, RIVM has an important role in mapping nitrogen flows to the environment and the precipitation of nitrogen in vulnerable nature reserves. IBED has a long history of research into nitrogen deposition and soil acidification. Both RIVM and IBED see the need to link more fundamental and practice-oriented nitrogen research, also because of the major social impact.

The collaboration will focus on the development of new measuring methods for nitrogen deposition. Examples of such alternatives are bio-indicators and bio-monitors for nitrogen concentration and deposition, and samplers that can be separated for wet and dry deposition, or with ion exchanger. In addition, further development of model instruments will take place, including attention to uncertainties, to create spatially comprehensive images and calculate the effect of emission reduction measures.

Finally, extrapolation into the effects of nitrogen deposition on soil and water quality will receive attention. Nitrogen can deteriorate biodiversity and the quality of ground and surface water. This fellowship focuses on measurement methods and indicators to determine possible damage to nature. Honorary Fellow The Honorary Fellow excels in the field at a practice-related level, and contributes to the ties between the university and the social work field. IBED is very much looking forward to the collaboration with these Honorary Fellows Dr. Cornelissen and Dr. Bleeker and the research projects with a practice-oriented component.