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Steppes form one of the largest biomes. Drastic changes in steppe ecology, land use and livelihoods came with the emergence, and again with the collapse, of communist states. Excessive ploughing and vast influx of people into the steppe zone led to a strong decline in nomadic pastoralism in the Soviet Union and China and in severely degraded steppe ecosystems. In Mongolia nomadic pastoralism persisted, but steppes degraded because of strongly increased livestock loads. After the Soviet collapse steppes regenerated on huge tracts of fallow land. Presently, new, restorative steppe land management schemes are applied. On top of all these changes come strong effects of climate change in the northern part of the steppe zone. This book gives an up-to-date overview of changes in ecology, climate and use of the entire Eurasian steppe area and their effects on livelihoods of steppe people. It integrates knowledge that so far was available only in a spectrum of locally used languages.
CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE SOCIOLOGY OF LANGUAGE brings to students, researchers and practitioners in all of the social and language-related sciences carefully selected book-length publications dealing with sociolinguistic theory, methods, findings and applications. It approaches the study of language in society in its broadest sense, as a truly international and interdisciplinary field in which various approaches, theoretical and empirical, supplement and complement each other. The series invites the attention of linguists, language teachers of all interests, sociologists, political scientists, anthropologists, historians etc. to the development of the sociology of language.
The Berne Symposium invited leading scientists of risk assessment research with transgenic crops on an international level in order to enhance the discussion regulators and members of the biotech industry. The goal was to determine the status quo and also to make progress in times of a first global spread of transgenes in agrosystems about risk assessment. The dialogue between scientists, regulators and industry representatives also revealed some lacunes of risk assessment research, which will have to be filled in the future: We still lack longterm experience, for which we will have to collect data with scientific precision. The symposium concluded asking for a risk-oriented longterm monitoring system based on critical science and hard data. This volume presents the discussion sessions as well as the scientific contributions and thus mirrors the risk assessment debate, based not on exaggerated negative scenarios but on critical science and hard data.
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