G-BiKE: New European Network working on Genomic Biodiversity for Resilient Ecosystems

From September 4th to 6th 2019, Joost went to Sarajevo in Bosnia to attend the 2nd meeting of G-BiKE, a new European COST network focussing on Genomic Biodiversity Knowledge for Resilient Ecosystems.

G-BiKE’s logo is a “DNA bike” highlighting the importance of genetic diversity knowledge for nature conservation.

G-BiKE is a research network within the Horizon 2020 COST Programme to link scientists and practitioners across the EU and beyond, highlighting the importance of genetic and genomic tools in biodiversity conservation. The main challenge is to establish the use of genomic data as a standard tool for monitoring and managing plants and animal species in order to ensure their persistence, and the continued supply of nature-based ecosystem services.

As the acronym itself refers to a bicycle, the basic idea of G-BiKE is to link two „wheels“, one that represents scientists and the other made of all those who directly implement ecosystem protection programs. The network programme is divided into five thematic units that are operationally organized as working groups (WG). WG1 focuses on implementing genetics into management, WG2 on monitoring strategies for genetic diversity, WG3 on the importance of genetic diversity for ecosystem services, WG4 on biotechnological assessments, and WG5 on knowledge sharing.

The G-BiKE network will run until May 2023, and currently includes 37 countries. The representatives for Norway are Alexander Kopatz from the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) in Trondheim, Joost Raeymaekers from the Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture at Nord University in Bodø, and Hugo de Boer from the Natural History Museum at the University of Oslo. Feel free to contact us for more information about G-BiKE!