Urban Land Institute appoints new CEO

WASHINGTON (August 3, 2009) – Patrick L. Phillips, President and Chief Executive Officer of ERA AECOM (formerly Economics Research Associates), has been selected as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Urban Land Institute, a global research and education organization dedicated to responsible land use. Phillips is taking over the position being vacated by current ULI CEO Richard M. Rosan, who has led the Institute’s staff for more than 17 years.

Phillips will start at ULI on September 14, 2009. The opportunity to guide ULI staff presents a unique chance to help boost the influence the Institute has on land use both globally and locally, Phillips said. “ULI is clearly the premier research and education organization involving land use. I am thrilled to take on the responsibility for leading an organization that provides such an unbeatable combination of intellectual content and member service.” 

The global recession, he noted, has presented a challenging environment in which ULI must stay relevant and provide high member value. “While ULI has traditionally been viewed through the lens of development and growth, we are facing lower prospects for growth in a number of the established markets we serve worldwide. At the same time, we are starting to have a larger presence in emerging markets. We need to take a fresh look at the entire portfolio of products and services ULI provides to make sure that what we offer reflects member needs, both in times of changing market conditions and for the long term,” Phillips said.

He stressed that ULI’s core priority areas — 1) sustainability, including environmentally and economically viable investment and development; 2) connecting infrastructure and land use planning; 3) workforce housing; and 4) capital markets – continue to be relevant in the current economic environment. In fact, positioning ULI in the dialogs on sustainability and restoring capital flows are two areas of particular urgency, Phillips said. Given the worldwide scope of the discussions and public policy changes related to these issues, “ULI has a profound role to play,” he said.

Rosan, Phillip’s predecessor, will be transitioning fulltime into the role of president of the ULI Foundation, the philanthropic branch of ULI that funds much of its program of work. It is a position he has held simultaneously while serving as ULI’s CEO.

SOURCE: Urban Land Institute

Edinburgh Botanics staff move in as £16m visitor centre blooms

Scotsman.com reports

STAFF at the Botanics are today moving into their new £16 million home after completion of building work on the visitor centre. The striking John Hope Gateway will be officially opened to the public in October.

They will now spend the next two months installing exhibitions and planting a biodiversity garden outside the visitor centre.
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SOURCE: Scotsman.com – Edinburgh Botanics staff move in as £16m visitor centre blooms

Thirty one million Dutch Center for Biodiversity

The Ministry of Education suggests 30 million euros from the natural gas available for an initiative of the University of Amsterdam, Leiden University and Wageningen University together with Naturalis a center for biodiversity to form. With the money is a very large, joint collection consisting of 37 million plants, rocks, stuffed animals and fossils, which Dutch Center for Biodiversity (NCB) in the top 5 global state. Moreover, a joint laboratory for DNA barcoding with the Central Bureau Schimmel Cultures, with offices in Leiden and Utrecht.

Het ministerie van OCW stelt 30 miljoen euro uit de aardgasbaten beschikbaar voor een initiatief van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Universiteit Leiden en Wageningen Universiteit die samen met Naturalis één centrum voor biodiversiteit gaan vormen. Met het geld wordt een zeer omvangrijke, gezamenlijke collectie gevormd van 37 miljoen planten, gesteenten, opgezette dieren en fossielen, waarmee het Nederlands Centrum voor Biodiversiteit (NCB) wereldwijd in de top 5 staat. Bovendien wordt een gezamenlijk laboratorium voor DNA-barcoding opgezet met het Centraal Bureau voor Schimmelcultures, met vestigingen in Leiden en Utrecht.

SOURCE: Wageningen University, 03/08/09 VIA groeneruimte.nl (Netherlands)

Urban water ecology at the ESA annual meeting

The Ecological Society of America (ESA) are holding their annual meeting in Albuquerque Convention Center:

The researchers will present their results in the following sessions at the Albuquerque Convention Center:

Luis Fernando Chaves: Urban Ecosystems Poster Session, Thurs., Aug. 6, 5-7 p.m.
Tessa Francis: Urban Ecosystems Oral Session, Mon., August 3, 1:50 p.m.
Olyssa Starry: Latebreaking Urban Ecosystems Poster Session, Fri., Aug. 7, 8:30-10:30 a.m.

ESA’s 94th Annual Meeting will be held Aug. 2-7 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The meeting will include more than 3,500 scientists, students and educators, and will center around the theme, “Ecological Knowledge and a Global Sustainable Society.”

To register for the meeting, contact Christine Buckley at christine@esa.org or 202 833-8773 ext. 211.

Argentine Rodent Devastating US Wetlands

Nutria is a rodent – Image Source – Flickr: blmurch

VOANews.com reports

Billions of dollars are spent every year in the United States in an attempt to control invasive species. Plants and animals brought legally and illegally into the country, have created extensive damage to the ecosystem and the economy.

SOURCE: Argentine Rodent Devastating US Wetlands – VOANews.com

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