Ecological Transformation Deep Dive

The Northwest Climate Adaptation Science Center (NW CASC) organizes an annual Deep Dive workshop that convenes researchers, practitioners and students to address a priority issue related to climate adaptation in the Northwest. Each Deep Dive aims to facilitate community development of an Actionable Science Agenda that outlines knowledge gaps and research needs and identifies opportunities to advance adaptation by linking science and practice.

Ecological Transformation Now? Managing Post-fire Vegetation Change in a Warming Climate

A newly-planted whitebark pine seedling next to charred log on the Flathead National Forest
A newly-planted whitebark pine seedling on the Flathead National Forest
Source: Nicky Ouellet, Montana Public Radio

The 2020 Deep Dive workshop brought together scientists and land managers from across the Northwest and beyond to synthesize the state of the science, practice and policy around managing post-fire vegetation conversion in a changing climate and to identify actionable science and co-production priorities. It focused on developing an actionable science agenda and fostering cross-disciplinary exchange of knowledge and ideas for managing post-fire vegetation change in semi-arid forests and rangelands in a warming climate.

Due to the distancing requirements to slow the spread of COVID-19, the 2020 Deep Dive was reenvisioned as an extended co-production process. This process kicked off with a webinar on June 3, 2020 (1 – 3 pm PT), where we described the focal issue and outlined a framework for co-production of three state of knowledge syntheses through the summer, culminating with a virtual fall workshop on October 6, 2020 (12 – 4 pm PT). Invited participants had the opportunity to join working groups synthesizing the state of knowledge around climate-driven, post-fire vegetation change, focusing on the biophysical, practice, and policy and human dimensions, respectively. The fall workshop brought all participants together to develop an actionable science agenda, deepening the transdisciplinary exchange of knowledge and ideas for managing post-fire vegetation conversions in a changing climate. The actionable science agenda and resultant communities of practice will help inform the Northwest Climate Adaptation Science Center’s funding and co-production priorities in 2020 and beyond.

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