Weeds and biodiversity working group

This working group is sponsored by the EWRS (European Weed Research Society).

We are a group of weed scientists, agroecologists, botanists and specialists from others disciplines, who are interested in weeds from a conservation perspective, in the composition of the arable floral in response to management tools, in ecosystem services provided by weeds, and in the role of weeds in supporting food webs and contributing to weed control.

The Working Group was established with the aims of fostering discussion and research on the role of weeds for biological diversity. Research is demonstrating the importance of weeds for many other taxa in farmed landscapes. With greater appreciation of the complex ecological interactions within agroecosystems and with regulatory organizations examining the impact of non-target effects of pesticides, this Working Group should provide a forum for discussions between members and enhance relevant research.

The main objective of the Working Group is to provide a platform for discussion and collaboration to;

  1. identify threatened arable plant species and the factors responsible for their decline, and to develop management options and political solutions to ensure their conservation,
  2. determine the relative importance of abiotic, biotic and management factors influencing the composition, diversity, abundance and damage potential of arable plant communities,
  3. identify and quantify the benefits of arable biodiversity in terms of supporting, regulating and provisioning ecosystem services, and to balance these against disservices,
  4. identify and quantify seed predation as an ecosystem service and the factors influencing seed predator abundance, diversity and activity.

Themes of the Working Group are subject to constant change due to changes in the composition, interests and activities of its members.

We try to achieve these objectives via:

  1. Working group meetings
  2. Training sessions
  3. Joint research activities and papers

If you are interested in becoming involved, it is very easy to join our group. All you have to do is contact the working group leader.

Young scientists network

The young scientists network was created spontaneously by a group of young EWRS members during the Weeds and Biodiversity workshop in Pisa in Autumn 2014. At the 2015 EWRS Symposium in Montpellier, the novel "EWRS young scientists network" was introduced to a larger audience and all scientists at the early stages of their career were invited to join.

Our goals are:

  • To increase the coordination among the young weed-scientists;
  • To help the young weed-scientists through exchange of information and ideas;
  • To conduct a few unique scientific activities for young weed-scientists each year.

We use existing workshops and symposia of EWRS to meet.

If you are interested to join the network and take part in the activities, please contact Christoph Redwitz (young_scientists@ewrs.org).

Photo of the Young scientist network participants in Montpellier, 2015.
Documents & Publications

Workshops Proceedings

(pdf files)

Weeds and biodiversity working group
Paula Westerman

Wageningen University and Research
Biointeraction and plant health - Field Crops
P.O. box 16, 6700 AA Wageningen
Tel: +31 320 2 91164
E-mail: paula.westerman@wur.nl

Young scientists
Christoph Redwitz

Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF)
Institute of Land Use Systems
Eberswalder Str. 84
D-15374 Müncheberge
E-mail: young_scientists@ewrs.org