Welcome to IBS Climate Change Biogeography Meeting. This meeting is co-organized by the CIBIO-UE and the International Biogeographical Society. The meeting will take place on the 20-24th March 2018 at the Colégio do Espirito Santo, University of Évora (Portugal).




Global environmental changes are driving biodiversity loss at unprecedented rates constituting a major threat to both human welfare and ecological stability. This realization has led to a growing interest in forecasting biological responses from local to global scales and from genes to ecosystems services. Despite unprecedented knowledge about natural systems it is not yet possible to make accurate predictions due to our incomplete understanding of how biological systems function and interact with physical and socioeconomic factors. Anthropogenic climate change and its realized and potential socio-environmental impacts and feedbacks represent the kind of large‐scale complex phenomena for which the integrative broad‐scale view of biogeography is especially useful. In this proposal, we are making the case for an “IBS off-year” that focus on the role of Biogeography in addressing the challenges associated with predicting future responses to climate change. We have tentatively proposed for main themes that reflect the past, present and future effects of climate change the distribution of life on Earth:

Theme I – “The past”: Our ability to quantify the impacts of climate change is greatly determined by our understanding of natural variability on timescales that go far beyond those of anthropogenic influences on climate. This can be achieved by “looking into the past” using global-scale paleo-climatic reconstructions over the past few centuries to millennia. This theme will showcase the state-of-art research in using reconstructions of ancient distributions and climates to better understand current and future changes.

Theme II – “Present”

 – “Detecting and describing patterns”. The increasing need to understand the consequences of global environmental change at large-scales has prompted a decade of studies on the statistical relationships between organisms and their environment. These “macroecological” approaches have now expanded from simply describing classical biogeographical patterns to focus on global environmental issues.

 – From patterns to mechanisms”. There is an increased focus on the development of a more mechanistic understanding of the patterns of distribution of species across the globe. This theme will showcase innovative projects aimed at inferring the key mechanisms underlying major biogeographical patterns (e.g. altitudinal, latitudinal) which may include studies from state-of-art mechanistic modeling to large-scale experimental programmes across major biogeographical gradients.

Theme III – “Looking into the future”. The final theme will highlight studies that integrate biogeographical approaches to forecasting changes in species distribution as a function of future climate change. This theme will try to showcase the development and application of sophisticated modeling approaches that combine ecology, physical geography, and phylogenetics.

Ultimately, with this IBS Special Meeting “Climate Change Biogeography” we aim to host a multidisciplinary discussion arena that brings together empiricists, theoreticians and experimentalists from around the world.


Évora is the capital of Portugal’s south-central Alentejo region. Historically, Évora was a significant centre for both trade and religion, which resonates through the sheer variety of tourist sites. Most of which are all conveniently contained within the city’s ancient walls. Évora has an abundance of Portuguese national monuments and is home to the second largest collection, after Lisbon. These range significantly, and together provide visitants with an absorbing cultural experience. Highlights include; an impressive Roman Temple, majestic cathedral, intriguing prehistoric standing stones and the macabre Chapel of Bones, amongst many others. The city’s quaint, cobbled streets, lined with traditional painted houses, are a delight to explore and have remained unpreserved through the generations. Evora should not be mistaken as a sleepy old relic that is reliant upon its glorious past. The city is young and vibrant, with a large student population who attend one of the world’s oldest universities. (http://www.evora-portugal.com/index.html).

Univ. of Évora

Universidade de Évora – University of Évora

The University of Évora is a public institution of higher education whose origins date back to 1559. After being closed in the 18th century, the university reopens in 1979. The University of Évora is organized in 4 Schools: Arts, Sciences and Technology, Social Sciences and Nursing and offers 34 undergraduate and 66 postgraduate degrees. Research and Development (R&D) covers several scientific areas through a network of 14 Research Units, all of them submitted to international evaluation, under the coordination of the Institute for Research and Advanced Studies. Furthermore, the UÉvora established 3 Chairs in areas of excellence: Biodiversity, Renewable Energies and Heritage, which are sponsored by private capital holders. Over the last years, the University has fostered a close link with the community. Such interaction has been possible through the creation of working networks and dissemination of knowledge such as the participation in the Science and Technology Park as well as through the establishment of protocols and contracts for the supply of services in partnerships with Companies, Universities, Associations and Institutes. The main R&D areas are: Agronomy and Biodiversity; Geophysics, Environment and Landscaping; Materials and Surface Science; Economics and Business Studies; Computer Sciences and Software Interoperability; Social and Political Sciences, History, History of Art, archeology, Science and Cultures; Applied Mathematics; Education; Linguistics and Literature; Elderly Healthcare. The 140 running R&D projects are developed through national and international partnerships, funded by the FP7, FCT as well as by private sponsorship. The University of Evora currently hosts around 5100 students enrolled in graduate courses, 2200 in Master’s courses and 900 in PhD courses. Moreover, it has a teaching staff of 640, of whom more than 83% hold a PhD degree, and an administrative staff of 470 (www.uevora.pt).

Blended in with the city, the main campus is comprised of buildings with a high patrimonial value from different historical periods. The following buildings deserve special attention: Espirito Santo College, Casa Cordovil, Luís António Verney College, Pedro da Fonseca College, Mateus d’ Aranda College, Vimioso Palace, Leões Factory and São João de Deus School of Nursing. Outside city limits, the university reaches as far as 12 km at the Mitra campus. There are also two experimental estates in the south of Alentejo and several other units scattered over different cities in the south of Portugal where teaching and researching activities are carried out, including Estremoz, Sines, Marvão and Alter do Chão.

Getting here!

How to get from Lisbon airport to Évora

Évora is connected to Lisbon by a reliable and inexpensive public transport network.

By bus:

Bus travel offers a great number of daily departures. The bus journey from Lisbon to Évora takes 1h45min and a single ticket costs €12.50. The inter city coach service is operated by “Rede Expresso” and the buses are clean, modern, have air conditioning, and Internet. Tickets can be purchased from “Sete Rios” bus station (served by the Jardim Zoológico metro station on the blue metro line) or via Internet at www.rede-expressos.pt. Internet tickets can be purchased up to 30 days in advance, but they are non-refundable and no alterations can be made to the tickets. When booking the ticket via Internet, make sure the destination is Évora and not Évora Alcobaça; a small town north of Lisbon.

By train:

Évora is connected to Lisbon by the Lisbon-Évora intercity rail route. Single tickets cost €12.20 and the journey takes 1h35 min. There are a total of 9 stops along the route, with Évora being the last station. The Lisbon to Évora train is operated by “Comboios de Portugal “(CP). Tickets can be purchased from www.cp.pt or from a train station. Train departs from “Oriente” train station (served by “Oriente” metro station on the red line) and passes through “Sete Rios” train station next to the bus station where buses to Évora depart from.


The best way to get to Évora is flying through Lisbon. The international airport in Lisbon is well connected with direct flights to all major European capitals.

Origin / flight duration / estimated price / airline

London 02:50 (direct) €110 British Airways

Frankfurt 03:05 (direct) €140 / $157 Lufthansa

Copenhagen 03:50 (direct) €280 TAP

São Paulo 09:50 €570 (direct) TAP

New York/Newark 10:50 €600 (1-stop Porto) TAP

Mexico City 14:00 €900 (1-stop Madrid) TAP Portugal + Aeromexico

Beijing 16:00 €580 (1-stop Frankfurt) Lufthansa + TAP Portugal

Sydney 28:00 €1060 (1-stop Dubai) Emirates