Skyline Innsbruck

Special Events @ IMC2019

Evening Shows Congress

Himalayas to Ocean  

This side-event will present audio-visual outputs from the Himalayas to Ocean (H2O) project, documenting the impacts of climate change along the Gandaki river in Nepal, from high-up in the Himalayan peaks to hundreds of kilometres further downstream in the country’s floodplains. Partnered with the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), H2O was set-up in 2017 to complement scientific research by raising awareness about climate change in novel ways, utilising compelling multimedia approaches that blend photography, video, and sounds. The session will discuss and interrogate the role these approaches can play – as well as their associated risks - in communicating complex scientific research in visually compelling and emotionally engaging ways.

Date: Monday 9 September 2019 20:15-21:00

Room: Congress Center, Saal Innsbruck 

Presenter: Alice Chautard, University of Oxford | Founder of H2O

Inside Mountains - Exploring the deepest cave in the world  

Part I - the cave: 

Veryovkina cave is the deepest known cave in the world. It is situated in the Caucasus mountains in Abkhazia. The presentation will begin by following the journey of exploration, describing a relatively insignificant 420m deep cave, but through many years of arduous digging and deep exploration expeditions by The Perovo-speleo team and The Perovo caving club who later pushed the cave to its current depth of -2212m and thus making it the worlds deepest cave. However, not only has the cave changed character as the team explored deeper, but also the project itself evolved over time from an average caving expedition to an international research project. Russian and Ukrainian biologists, Bulgarian and US microbiologists, Spanish geologists, hydrogeologists and most recently an English paleoclimatologist from the University of Innsbruck are all working with the team to shed light on the genesis and the history of the cave and of its ecosystem.

Part II - photographing in the dark: 

When you consider taking a photograph underground in a cave, you have to turn the camera to fully manual and throw the rule book out of the window. Caves are unforgiving black spaces. There is no natural light down there. They are the darkest places on the planet and therefore the ultimate in low-light photography. Professional cave photographer Robbie Shone will briefly explain from his 20 year long career some of the challenges and techniques he uses to accomplish his photographs that have graced the pages of National Geographic, GEO, Red Bulletin and Terra Mater magazines.

Date: Wednesday 11 September 2019 20:15-21:00

Room: Congress Center, Saal Innsbruck 

Presenter: Pavel Demidov (Part I), Robbie Shone (Part II)

Evening presentations

African Mountain Research (AMR)  

The case for an African Mountains Convention: Africa’s trans-boundary mountain systems are widely dispersed, making systemic intervention difficult. A number of factors including climate change and population growth are threatening the ability of these mountain systems, including the seven Afromontane regions, to deliver valuable ecosystem services. While there are examples of successful national and regional interventions to promote Sustainable Mountain Development (SMD), a piecemeal approach is insufficient. If effective and timely action is not taken, Africa’s mountains will experience further deforestation, soil erosion and the loss of biodiversity. Degradation will make it harder for the mountains to sustain their growing highland populations, and to act as water towers and climate stabilisers to lowland agriculture and cities. The medium to long term consequences of this failure could be catastrophic for Africa. What is needed is a systemic level intervention including an SMD policy framework for Africa capable of safeguarding the continent’s mountain systems.

Date: Monday 9 September 2019 19:00-19:45

Room: Lecture Room 1, SOWI 

Presenter: Alex Hickman

Climate research exploring at 8000 meter mountains in the Himalayas  

Collecting samples from the face of the mountains gives a valuable complement to satellite photos for research in climate change. The event will bring the audience high above the clouds with a bird's-eye view from the roof of the world, still with the ear to the ground. As one of the most experienced female 8000 meter mountain climbers in Sweden, Carina Ahlqvist, mountaineer and climate research explorer, designs expeditions in collaboration with NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA).

The expedition Makalu Climate Climb provided a unique opportunity to combine adventure and research. Mount Makalu, 8481 meters, is the fifth highest mountain in the world, 20 km southeast of Everest. Inviting ESA to collaborate, the expedition objectives were to study the historical extent of the Barun glacier, raise awareness of the effects of climate change and to attempt to summit Mount Makalu by the expedition leader Ahlqvist. An international team of 12, a total of 50 with the support crew in Nepal, trekked along the remote Barun Valley to reach the Makalu Base Camp at 4870 meters. Here, the expedition conducted on-the-ground scientific research in support of ESA’s Climate Change Initiative (CCI). The expedition also collaborated with NASA, collecting samples for research on landslides. The presentation gives insights from local mountain village peoples’, climbers’ and own observations of climate change in the Himalayas. The session shares learnings from what it takes to be on the edge at high altitude where no life can exist, still the sensation is being 200% alive.

Today, Ahlqvist has been on five climate expeditions to 8000 meters mountains. She is a Member in The Explorers Club and a trained Climate Reality Leader by Al Gore. With over 20 years of experience from the business sector, she is not a scientific researcher herself, but channels and amplifies the voice of the planet. Ahlqvist, now studying geology at the Stockholm University, believes that the purpose is higher than the summit and that no one is too small to be the change.

Date: Tuesday 10 September 2019 19:00-19:45

Room: Lecture Room 1, SOWI 

Presenter: Carina Ahlqvist

The Mountain Legacy Project: Exploring 150 years of landscape change in the Canadian mountain west through repeat photography. 

For over 20 years the Mountain Legacy Project ( ) based at the University of Victoria in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada’s western-most province, has been using repeat photography to explore change in Canada’s mountain landscapes. Utilizing what is arguably the world’s largest collection of systematic historic mountain photographs (over 120,000) MLP teams seek to determine the photo locations, go to the same place, and re-photograph the images as accurately as possible. Using custom-designed software the historic and modern images are then aligned and analyzed for change.

Join Mountain Legacy Project researchers for a look at landscape-level change in some of Canada’s iconic mountain areas viewed through the processes that inform MLP’s field, lab, and research work.

Visit to to explore the historic and modern images in their geographic setting.

Date: Tuesday 10 September 2019 20:15-21:00

Room: Lecture Room 1, SOWI 

Presenter: Mary Sanseverino


we4DRR “meet and greet”  

This side-event informs about the network we4DRR – The network is an exchange network for female experts and caters women working in research, policy and practitioners in the field of natural hazards and disaster risk reduction. It offers information about the aim and outputs of the network and the membership procedure and promotes the new student award we4DRR 2019. With this award, outstanding master’s and PhD theses or scientific papers contributing to the topic of gender issues in disaster risk reduction are rewarded once a year. The session invites all members of the network and all female experts working in the field of disaster risk reduction and/or gender-related topics who are participating IMC 2019 to discuss latest topics in the research field and get together for a meet and greet.

Date: Monday 9 September 18:00-19:00

Room: SOWI Aula

Presenter: Doris Damyanovic and Karin Weber, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna 

Monitoring, Observing and Informing on Mountain Environments - Status and Future Prospects  

The event will showcase presentations on the latest scientific work undertaken by two MRI's Working Groups: 1) MRI Elevation Dependent Warming Working Group; and 2) MRI Mountain Observatories Working Group, which will also include a recap on their respective past and future contributions to the work plan of the Group on Earth Observations initiative, the Global Network for Observations and Information in Mountain Environments, GEO-GNOME. Inputs from the GEO-GNOME work plan and its next phase from 2020-2022 will be introduced, with information on how to actively participate and contribute to be a part of this global network effort in this next phase. A panel discussion will be invited to debate, reflect and present on some of the key challenges and opportunities for the scientific community in the development and implementation of connected and networked mountain observation efforts worldwide, inviting the attending audience to also partake in this discussion and collectively learn about the scientific research community perspectives on how to scale and connect data and information for knowledge on mountain social-ecological systems.

Date: Tuesday 10 September 2019 17:45-19:00

Room: SOWI Aula

Presenter: MRI, GEO-GNOME and other invited panelists.

Journal session  



With the recognition of the importance that mountains have played in the earth eco-system and in people’s daily life, mountain research is gradually becoming hot. Where do mountain researchers publish their papers and what are the unique features of the four SCI-indexed mountain journals (Arctic Antarctic and Alpine Research, Mountain Research and Development, Journal of Mountain Science,Eco-Mont)? The four journals’ developing trends, subject preference, key report topics, major country and institution sources, author cooperation relationship by using data from Clarivate's Web of Science and Journal Citation Reports and from web search. The results can be used to guide mountain researchers to choose the suitable journal to publish.

Date: Wednesday 11 September 18:00-19:30

Room: SOWI Lecture room 1

Presenter: Qiu Dunlian, Chief Editor of the Journal of Mountain Science

NEMOR, the Network for European Mountain Research  

The Network for European Mountain Research (NEMOR) is a network of institutions -public or private- undertaking research in mountain areas, who want to promote research in, and for the sustainable development of, these areas. NEMOR was established in 2017. It builds on concerted collaboration between researchers across different disciplines and European countries. To present, two key outcomes of this collaboration have been: (1) the Strategic Research Agenda ‘Mountains for Europe’s Future’, based on the H2020 Societal Challenges, which was launched in Brussels on 26 April 2016, and (2) "European Mountains Test-beds for Europe to face global changes", a document based on the three pillars of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, presented in Barcelona in May 2018. Both position statements advocate the need to continue and promote mountain research in Europe. Key objectives of NEMOR are (1) Advocate for European mountain research, covering the spectrum from basic to applied, transdisciplinary, research; (2) Enable discussion of research priorities addressing mountain regions; (3) Foster and connect mountain networks and inter/trans-boundary partnerships;(4) Initiate, coordinate and enhance activities with reference to the priority topics with a view toward the European Commission’s new research programme (FP9) and other funding instruments; (5) Recognize the functions of mountains for Europe as a whole and enable connections to relevant organizations and institutions; and (6) Serve as the interlinkage from European to global mountain topics in support of MRI’s vision. In this communication we aim at presenting NEMOR to potentially interested researchers and institutions.

Date: Wednesday 11 September 18:00-18:30

Room: SOWI Aula

Presenter: Bernat Claramunt-López

Permanent exhibitions


Interdisciplinary research (IDR) has become more important, and it is more frequently carried out than ever. Nevertheless, although there does exist much literature about epistemological challenges of IDR and countless programmatic declarations that underline its value, we know only little about forms and problems of IDR practice.

Therefore, our project on Studying, Portraying and ASSessing examples of good scientific practice in interdisciplinary work – An explorative study about collaborations of sciences and humanities with particular reference to contributions of design and arts (SPASS) is focusing on the practice of IDR.

During IMC2019 we are offering an Open Space about Interdisciplinary Research. Thus, we are providing for all participants of the conference an extra opportunity to make up their minds about the dynamics of IDR, its strengths and weaknesses, to reflect and discuss these issues, and to share their experiences.

Our Twofold Installation about IDR serves to assess the relevance of 24 factors stimulating and shaping interdisciplinary research, concerning their general importance and their heuristic functions. Additionally, we invite participants to share their insights with us in some semi-structured in-depth Interviews about their IDR experiences.

Dates: Monday 09. September 2019; 10:00-18:00 / Tuesday 10. September 2019; 10:00-18:00 / Wednesday 11. September 2019; 10:00-18:00

Location: SOWI Foyer, 1st floor

Presenter: Andreas Metzner-Szigeth (Free University of Bozen-Bolzano) and the SPASS research group

Mountain Research Initiative  

The Mountain Research Initiative is an international network that promotes research on mountain regions across borders and disciplines through connection and collaboration – with a view to supporting pathways towards sustainable development.

Through our flagship activities, synthesis workshops, working groups, events, and online platforms we bring researchers and stakeholders from diverse disciplines and backgrounds together. We work with the mountain research community and society more broadly to identify research priorities and possibilities for common action, and we support this common action by providing targeted funding, coordination, and administrative assistance. We also strive to keep the research community informed, and work with research organizations and funding agencies to ensure that mountain global change topics are recognized and addressed.

We are making connections for our changing mountains.

Dates: Monday to Thursday

Location: SOWI Foyer

Presenter: MRI Team

Alpine Convention  

In the nineties, the Alpine Convention was a pioneer of its kind by being the world’s first international treaty considering a transnational mountain area in its geographical entirety. The Convention was signed by the eight Alpine countries: Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Slovenia and Monaco and the European Union and came into effect in 1995.

Since the Contracting Parties share a common territory with common challenges, the Alpine Convention aims at the protection and sustainable development of the Alps. This mountain area in the heart of Europe is the natural, cultural, living as well as economic environment for more than 14 million people and a manifold number of guests per annum.

Dates: Monday and Tuesday

Location: SOWI Foyer

Presenter: Permanent Secretariat of the Alpine Convention

General events

Conference Excursions  

The conference excursion will be offered Thursday (September 12th) afternoon to a site valley close to Innsbruck with long and interesting stories of human-environmental interactions. Please check out the details here.

Additionally, there are various (research) sites near the venue which could be visited within half-day, one-day or two-day trips. In case your are interested, don't hesitate to contact scientists from the University of Trento, University of Bozen, EURAC or the University of Innsbruck working in your field of interest. 

Conference Dinner  

Conference dinner (Thursday night, September 12th) will follow the conference excursion in a special historic place in the city of Hall. Please check out the details here.

You want to offer another side event or organize a project meeting?

Organizations and initiatives are welcome to organize meetings etc. before or after the conference. Seminar rooms will be made available free of charge. Organization will be supported by the local steering committee and staff.


Nach oben scrollen