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Populations are increasingly vulnerable to disastrous natural or technological events, as demographic and urban growth lead to greater exposures of goods and people. Large-scale evacuation strategies are efficient tools for mitigating this vulnerability. Nonetheless, risks incurred during an important displacement through an altered environment are high: refusal to evacuate, crashes, direct exposure to the source hazard, riots, emergency services failures ...  En savoir plus ...

Agent-based social simulation is gaining ground as a candidate of choice for building decision-support tools in the management of complex socio-environmental systems, and the resulting models are therefore being driven to produce more realistic outcomes. Hence, integrating large data corpuses (demographical, environmental, geographical...) as an input to these models becomes more critical ...  En savoir plus ...

Habitat loss and fragmentation are major threats to biodiversity and, incidentally, for the stability and existence of human society. The domination of nature by modern western societies is expressed by the transformation and simplification of the landscape matrix, which can cause disruptions in processes and degradation of ecosystem services. In this context, protected areas have been designed as a cornerstone of the conservation of wildlife and flora but ...  En savoir plus ...

During the last century, WHO have led public health interventions that resulted in spectacular achievements such as the worldwide eradication of smallpox and the elimination of malaria from the Western world. However, besides major successes achieved in control of infectious diseases, most elimination/control programs remain frustrating in many tropical countries where specific biological and socio-economical features have prevented implementation of ... En savoir plus ...

Researchers in several institutions are currently attempting to understand how the microscale heterogeneity of soils influences the activity of microorganisms and the fate of organic matter, whose mineralization could have a significant effect on climate change. In Qatar, similar preoccupations arise about the microscale heterogeneity of porous media, but for reasons that are very different. Indeed, here, the need to understand better how the complex geometry ...  En savoir plus ...

The reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by improving the efficiency of agricultural systems through robust ecologically-based management practices represents the most important challenge facing agriculture today. Models are needed to evaluate the effects of soil properties, climate, and agricultural management practices on soil carbon and on the nitrogen transformations responsible forGHG emissions. Models of Carbon and nitrogen cycles in ...  En savoir plus ...

Studies of infectious disease systems have typically tended to focus solely on the interaction between the host and the causative agent. This approach, inherited from medical methodology, has served epidemiologists well. Indeed, it has allowed understanding how pathogen spread through space (Grenfell, Bjornstad, & Kappey, 2001) and time (Keeling & Grenfell, 1997) in order to inform public health policies. En savoir plus ...

Seasonally inundated by nutrient-rich sediments from Andean headwaters, Amazonian “whitewater” river floodplains have long been centers for human settlements practicing a mixed subsistence system of cultivation, supplemented by fishing and hunting. Over the past several decades, unprecedented demographic and economic growth have challenged the traditional balance of resource use that sustains both humans and biodiversity on the floodplain and bordering upland. Threats to the integrity of Amazon floodplain habitats from dams, river navigation networks, extension of the agricultural frontier, and climate change are increasingly severe. However, to date, biodiversity scenarios for the Amazon have not considered these critical environments. En savoir plus ...