Università degli studi di Sassari (UNISS)

Università degli studi di Sassari (UNISS)

The University of Sassari (UNISS), located in the isle of Sardinia, is an Italian public university with over 450 years of history. It currently comprises 13 Departments encompassing physical, social, human and economic sciences and offers 51 degree courses among which are 26 BA/BS courses, 25 MA/MS courses. The Desertification Research Centre (NRD-UNISS) started its activities in the early ‘90s as a multidisciplinary research group. It became an Interdepartmental Centre in 2000 with the specific aim to promote studies and research on desertification, land degradation and sustainable land management. NRD is member of the Global Network of Dryland Research Institutes, is the operational secretary of DesertNet, accredited to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.

NRD-UNISS involves some 40 professors and researchers from eight departments, covering a wide range of  disciplinary areas such as agronomy, earth science, ecology, economics, environmental science, forestry, livestock science, etc. The staff of post docs and PhD students is composed of some 30 units with ground experience in the field and on the design and implementation of international R&D projects. Related to this LIFE proposal, NRD-UNISS has gained a pluriannual research experience on the properties, functions, services and threats of the Mediterranean silvopastoral systems. Since 2006 NRD-UNISS has been managing a Long Term Observatory on wooded grasslands located in NE Sardinia at 250–300 m a.s.l., in an area which is representative of many other MED pastoral areas, incl. a variety of land uses like grasslands managed in different ways, cork-oak forest, and silvo-arable systems. Projects: (i) “SOILSINK” (http://soilsink.entecra.it); (ii) FP7 “Ecofinders ” (www.ecofinders.eu); (iii) "PASCUUM" (Ecosystem services of large scale grazing systems); (iv) "Ichnusa bubula" (Innovation of the beef cattle production system).

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