In early 2020 the Nature Conservation Programme in North Macedonia – phase 2 started the implementation of a pilot training for strengthening the capacities of stakeholders about the concept of ecosystem and ecosystem services. The training comprises several modules that will be implemented from January to June 2020. The training is attended by representatives of state institutions, public enterprises, agencies, institutes, managers of protected areas (national parks, natural monuments, natural parks) as well as NGOs. The aim of this pilot training is for the stakeholders to strengthen their capacities and knowledge about ecosystems and ecosystem services and to gradually start introducing this concept in their working environment.
The first module of this training under the heading “Introduction to the concept of ecosystems and ecosystem services and similar concepts” was held on 29-30 January 2020 in Hotel Manastir in Berovo. The lecturer for this module was doctor Svetla Bratanova Doncheva from the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, representative of Bulgaria in MEAS (Mapping and assessment of ecosystems and their services) group in the EU. In this module the participants learned in more detail about several concepts, such as: sustainable development (concept and approach), ecosystem approach, ecosystem integrity and role of biodiversity, the concept of ecosystem services as well as DPSIR (Driver, Pressure, State, Impact and Response) methodology.
The second module, “Mapping and evaluation of ecosystems and ecosystem services” was held on 17-18 February 2020 in Hotel Holiday Inn in Skopje. The lecturer for this module was doctor Sylvie Campagne from the Institute of Regional Geography with the Leibniz University in Hannover, Germany. The module was about provision/flow/demand for ecosystem services, spatial and temporal heterogeneity and trade-off – links between ecosystem services, different methods (biophysical, economic and social), indicators and models for evaluation of services and their mapping, as well as the application of services in policy and decision making.