Bern Hub: Challenge 1

Sustainable human activities in protected areas

Biodiversity is suffering in Switzerland today. Not only almost half of the habitat types, but also half of all native species are threatened or potentially threatened. To curb this terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity loss, and in accordance with the Aichi targets of the biodiversity convention, Switzerland should have a functioning ecological infrastructure, such as a network of protected and connected areas throughout the landscape. Within this network, the status and quality of protected areas needs to be improved and invasive species dealt with. However, regions with a dense network of protected areas are also highly popular as attractive recreation areas and thus face huge challenges due to increasing visitor impacts on biodiversity and beyond. Human activities in nature parks or near protected areas must be jointly developed over the entire service chain and aligned with biodiversity goals.

Bern Challenge 1
Our Goals

To identify and initiate the first systemic, innovative solutions to enable sustainable human interactions in protected areas.

Our achievements
  • 15 Projects are now operational
  • The Program Committee, consisting of 7 people representing science, economy, policy and civil society, was constituted to jointly  support the further development of the strategic orientation of the Bern Hub portfolio.
  • The Bern Hub’s commencement of operation was greeted with a high level of interest from the local and national media
  • The Wyss Academy board members were invited for a field visit to one of the Bernese nature parks, with inputs from the park manager and lively discussions on potential links to activities in the other hubs
Projects underway

Ecological infrastructure of the Canton of Bern

Technical planning of the ecological infrastructure for the canton of Bern

Stopping biodiversity loss in waterbodies – despite climate change

Integrated management of the Aare river (climate, biodiversity, infrastructure)

Regenerating raised bogs more efficiently and more effectively

Accelerate and implement raised bog regenerations

Hydrology of the Bernese Fens

Define and manage the hydrological buffer of fens

Masterplan for invasive non-native species

Dealing with invasive species

Nature park stations in Bernese parks

Development and implementation of nature park centers (Chasseral, Diemtigtal, Gantrisch)