We are excited to invite members of the GEO Mountains community to actively engage in our activities! As we prepare for our next phase from 2024–2027, we aim to redefine and rejuvenate our Task Groups, further consolidating and developing the groups initiated in 2022.

The GEO Mountains Task Groups (TGs) are composed of members from our community (i.e. anyone registered in the MRI Expert Database who has indicated that they would like to also be considered a member of GEO Mountains). These groups will work collaboratively with other members and the GEO Mountains Secretariat to achieve specific outputs within defined timelines. Each Task Group may undertake sub-activities, and can evolve as their tasks are completed. Members have the flexibility to join one or more TG for either short-term or long-term contributions, depending on their availability and interests in contributing to specific outputs.

We are in the process of redefining six new Task Groups:

  1. Inventories: Contribute to the collective effort of enhancing data discoverability by participating in GEO Mountains’ inventories and coverage analyses.
  2. Regional Engagement Activities: Help create knowledge products like syntheses or policy briefs, and support follow-up activities from our Regional Workshops Series, including technical training and capacity building tailored to regional needs.
  3. Global Policy Outreach: Engage in GEO Mountains’ advocacy activities related to International Years, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Conference of the Parties (COPs), and other global policy forums.
  4. Treaties Spatialisation: Join a group focused on improving the understanding of international environmental agreements' coverage across global mountain regions.
  5. Essential Mountain Variables: Identify and help prioritise a set of Essential Variables specific to mountain areas, ensuring the requirements meet mountain-specific needs.
  6. Contributions to Global Assessments: Contribute to assessment-related syntheses products, addressing knowledge needs for initiatives like the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 7th assessment.

These TGs are dynamic and may evolve based on the level of interest and engagement from our members. We are also open to new contributions and propositions for additional TGs.

If you are interested in participating or proposing a new TG, please fill in the form below. The deadline for submissions is 30 June 2024.

We look forward to your engagement and involvement in shaping the future activities of GEO Mountains!

Join a Task Group 

Task Groups 2022–2023

In early 2022, GEO Mountains launched 11 Task Groups. Collectively, the Task Groups span the full breadth of the GEO Mountains Implementation Plan – from helping contribute to our inventories and supporting nascent systematic mountain monitoring initiatives to developing training and capacity development resources (including “knowledge packages”) that seek to deliver the latest science into policy circles effectively. The overall objectives of each Task Group are summarised below.

Our Task Groups are open and inclusive. In addition to helping drive GEO Mountains forwards, getting involved may bring multiple benefits to participants themselves, including collaborating with colleagues across diverse disciplines and regions; maintaining the legacy and extending the impact of shorter-term projects; and supporting Open Data and Open Science efforts. 


andes2image by Nicolas Prieto on Unsplash

Task Groups Objectives and Activities

1.1 a) Developing, maintaining, and sharing a list of relevant gridded datasets and other tools

Objective: To contribute to the development of the GEO Mountains General Inventory by providing links to (and key metadata of) relevant, useful, important, free and open datasets.
Scope:  A broad range of disciplines and themes, across all mountain regions globally (broadly/inclusively defined). The emphasis is on remotely sensed and modelled (i.e. gridded) datasets.

1st meeting slides


1.1 b) Developing and maintaining a list of interdisciplinary in situ mountain observational infrastructure and associated datasets

Objective: To contribute to the development of the GEO Mountains In Situ Inventory by contributing metadata describing interdisciplinary mountain stations and infrastructure, as well as links to associated datasets. The group aims to add sites that are currently not in the inventory, as well as to add / improve / update information about sites that are already represented.
Scope: A broad range of disciplines and themes. Sites should be in mountainous terrain (broadly/inclusively defined). 

1st meeting slides


1.2 Contributing to a series of regional workshops / consultations 

Objective: To contribute to the next phase of GEO Mountains community and stakeholder engagement work. Building upon virtual consultations help in 2021 and 2022, the group will help support GEO Mountains planned in person engagements in several mountain regions in 2023. These events will engage with data providers, seek to exploit existing data, support the establishment of regional Mountain Observatories, and contribute to capacity development. The events will also continue to seeks to establish the current “data landscape” in key mountain regions globally (data availability and user data needs), identify related outstanding barriers / challenges, and co-develop potential solutions.
Activities: Help plan and undertake a series of regional workshops / consultations. 

1st meeting slides


1.4 Contribute Knowledge Packages via GEO Mountains to the GEO Knowledge Hub (GKH), thereby making any relevant work / outputs more reproducible / extendable

Objective: To deliver “Knowledge Packages” pertaining to mountain-relevant applications to the GKH under the banner of GEO Mountains, and advocate for open and reproducible science (including as a basis for sound policy, decision making, and actions). An example can be found here

1st meeting slides


2.1 Analyse the extent to which data from mountain observatories are freely available, and which measurement protocols are followed

Objective: Once it is sufficiently populated, to analyze the GEO Mountains In Situ Inventory (metadata analysis) in order to establish the extent to in situ mountain datasets are shared, and whether established observation protocols are routinely applied in mountains. The group may also undertake the more ambitious tasks of seeking to identify the most critical data gaps (with respect to space, time, and elevation) for a wide range of interdisciplinary variables by means of a coverage analysis, which may be followed up by a set of recommendations for improving the situation.
Expected outcome: A scientific publication that extends the analysis of Thornton et al. (2022) to be more interdisciplinary and integrative of research-oriented sites.

1st meeting slides


2.2 Contribute to the MRI’s existing Mountain Observatories (MOs) and Elevation Dependent Climate Change (EDCC) Working Groups to support the development of a Unified High Elevation Platform (UHOP) and a global network of Mountain Observatories

Objective: To identify opportunities for GEO Mountains to contribute to the activities of the two Working Groups, as well as to take on feedback from the WG to further improve GEO Mountains’ provision of datasets and services to the community (mainly the research community in this context).

1st meeting slides


2.3 Contribute to a GEO Mountains workshop to identify Essential Mountain Societal / Socio-Economic Variables

Objective: To help continue work associated with the workshop held at the IMC2022 on identifying critical societal variables that should be monitored and obtained as priorities in order to track, understand and better predict the impacts of change (both climatic and societal) on mountain socio-ecological systems in an integrated sense. 
Expected outcome: Scientific publication, with associated  database. 

1st meeting slides


2.4 Develop a novel, global-scale spatial dataset (or datasets) related to mountain socio-ecological systems

Objective: To develop a novel spatial delineation of mountain socio-ecological systems. The resultant dataset(s) should help to fill key data gaps in the quest to characterise complex integrated mountain socio-ecological systems. The activity will be partly informed by the workshop organised in Task Group 2.3, as well as the outputs of other work on Essential Mountain Variables (e.g. EMCVs and Essential Biodiversity Variables in Mountains) 
Scope: Extent should be global, but spatial resolution should also be sufficiently high to capture important local-scale variability driven by e.g. complex topography and other “mountain-specificities”.
Expected outcome: Novel dataset and associated scientific publication. 

1st meeting slides


2.5 Establish links with the paleoscience community to help ensure that paleodata pertaining to mountains are discoverable, accessible, and usable

Objective: To ensure that paleodata is sufficiently represented in the GEO Mountains General Inventory. The group seeks to strengthen the engagement of the paleoscience community, including with respect to applying provided mountain paleo datasets (e.g. mountain climate modelling or natural hazard quantification work).

This group has not yet met due to low participation; anybody interesting in working on this task is urged to get in touch!  

3.4  Develop educational, training materials and capacity building activities related to the drivers, processes, and impacts of environmental, ecological, and societal change in mountains

Objective: To lead and coordinate the development of education, training, and capacity building activities within the scope of GEO Mountains. Accordingly, the geographic emphasis is on (but not limited to) the focal regions of the Adaptation at Altitude programme. The outputs will be shared here
Possible activities: Summer schools, online video series, course notes, workshops, “hackatons” etc.

1st meeting slides


3.5 Applying existing data and information resources to respond to pre-identified assessment and policy needs

Objective: To ensure that GEO Mountains makes and coordinates relevant contributions of data, information and expertise to major global assessment exercises and policy agendas, e.g. the IPCC, IPBES, UNFCCC/Paris Agreement, UN Sustainable Development Goals/2030 Agenda and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, as well as more regional assessment efforts and related exercises. The outputs will be shared here

1st meeting slides

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