Call for nomination of landscapes

for installation of long-term ecological research infrastructure

A modular, highly-networked, environmental research infrastructure.

EFTEON aims to provide and operate a network of instrumented landscape-level platforms for the South African environmental research community, focused on socially-relevant terrestrial landscapes and their coupled hydrological systems.

Landscape requirements

Expected characteristics for the six distributed EFTEON landscapes


  • Landscapes of sustained national and international research interest, because they are representative of important and understudied ecosystems nationally or globally, and/or present unique and novel research opportunities, and/or make exceptional contributions to South African livelihoods, wellbeing or economy
  • Potential to study, within one contiguous landscape of tens of square kilometres, the coupled hydrological and biogeochemical cycles at relevant scales, including the links between atmosphere, land and fluvial and/or groundwater systems, while also addressing questions of the functional effects on biodiversity and human use of the landscape
  • Includes contrasting land uses derived from the same basic geomorphological/climate and vegetation template (e.g. protected land, modified lands and transformed lands), especially if these changes are currently ongoing or the historical record is very complete

Accessibility and

  • Core location to be suitable for long term ( > 20 year) environmental research
  • Include or collaborate with existing research infrastructure, experiments or observational datasets
  • Research platform to be available for use by other research groups or institutions
  • “Availability of logistical support and operational facilities

In the face
of Change

  • Protected, modified, and transformed Land-uses
  • Climate change gradients or climatic transition
  • Transition Zones
  • Areas of special significance such as; strategic water source areas, areas of particular biodiversity importance, areas of importance for carbon sequestration, et cetera

The 3-Step Landscape Selection Process

  • Call for landscape nominations
    The community is encouraged to propose landscapes for EFTEON research infrastructure development.

    Closing date 15 March 2020

  • Regional workshopping landscape proposal assessment.

    March – May 2020

  • Request for detailed Proposals from prioritized landscapes.

    May – August 2020

  • EFTEON Landscapes selected and contracting initiated.

    September – October 2020

Submission Form
Closing 15 March 2020

Selected landscapes will receive EFTEON contracts. Read more about the submission process here

1. Contact information

Your details:

Landscape Custodianship:

List of Collaborators:

Collaboration & Sharing Agreement:

2. Justification of Landscape

Tell us why you think this site is appropriate as a EFTEON research landscape.

landscape selection principles:
  • Long Term Environmental Research: The EFTEON is intended for long term continuous operation and the primary purpose of the network is to provide long term environmental data for the national and global research community. Site operations need to undertake measurements and observations that are of value at both the short and long term. Selected landscapes need to be available for multi-decade operation.
  • Research Platform: The EFTEON is intended as a research platform with an open data and open platform use policy, in order to facilitate the use of the infrastructure and data by other researchers, both nationally and internationally.
  • Spatial diversity coverage: Sites selected for the network are to represent the major biomes and human transformed ecosystems and their embedded aquatic systems. A focus on lived-in landscapes and landscapes in transition (climate change or land use change ).
  • Historic observational and experimental datasets: Incorporation of existing research and linking to existing socio-ecological datasets. The leverage of long term social-ecological and earth system data sets would be considered an advantage in the selection of the sites. A strong emphasis on data archiving and provision and data archaeology to ensure long term availability and continuity of datasets.
  • Experiments and manipulations: Where appropriate implement and sustain appropriate simple experiments to help elucidate a process-level understanding of ecosystem changes.

3. Enter Landscape Information

The site proposed represents the center of your proposed landscape, if multiple proposals are received within a single landscape area they will be grouped during the regional work-shopping assessment of proposals.

General details:

Since the nomination is for a landscape in the 10-100km² size range please indicate a central reference point for the landscape i.e., entrance gate, site office, research center, existing infrastructure…

Landscape in Science:

What role does the landscape have now, or in the past with regard to knowledge generation.

Landscape information:

4. Logistical and Operational Support

Describe the status of services available around the landscape.