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Dear reader,

The SNOWMAN Network has experienced a very exciting first half year of 2013. And the second half promises to be even more defiant.

The Call 4 proposals on Integrating natural, social and economic science perspectives on soil research have been reviewed and three projects have been selected. A short description of the selection process and the projects that will receive SNOWMAN funding will be given in this newsletter.

SNOWMAN currently carries out an investigation on the future of the network and at the same time reviews the network organisation. New developments at the European level, especially within the context of Horizon 2020, may open opportunities for new ways of funding and of working. We relate the self-sustained SNOWMAN network to the Horizon 2020 (H2020) themes and societal challenges and we mirror our activities to H2020 instruments (EIPs, JPIs, ERA-NETs, KICs).

SNOWMAN wants to build strong transnational and subnational collaboration on sustainable soil management in Europe in order to get soil issues higher on the agenda of the EC as a cross cutting theme to address the H2020 societal challenges. Although not formally a JPI, the ambition of SNOWMAN is to become a truly European platform (“umbrella”) for sustainable soil and land management with special emphasis on soil as a natural resource within H2020.

Reaching end-users by end-user participation in our projects and by focusing on stakeholder relevant research in a serious way is one of our unique selling points. To this end we aim for disseminating the research results to our target groups. Knowledge dissemination is addressed in this newsletter as well; the SNOWMAN Landscape describing our projects on Contamination, Agriculture, Ecosystem Services and Climate Change could be used to (im)prove the added value of the network as was discussed at AquaConsoil, Barcelona.

Our future investigation will continue after summer. SNOWMAN has proposed, together with the European Commission (EC-DG-RTD), to organise a Dialogue Session on Soil and Land Management in Europe during the Global Soil Week in Berlin (October 27-31). SNOWMAN partners and potential new partners are very welcome to participate.

In November we will draw some conclusions on the future of the SNOWMAN network together with our Advisory Group members: scope and priorities, organizational form, public and private partner participation, measures of success and the options for growing and showing a viable European network on Soil will be discussed.

Right after that meeting we will have a joint 2-day meeting with all projects that are currently running: starting projects (from Call 4), mid-term project (from Call 3), projects that end (from Call 2). Some more details are given in this newsletter.

Finally, to reach our goals and to increase critical mass we definitely need more (private and public) partners. If you would like to take part in our network to build a strong and strategic European network on soil together, do not hesitate to contact me.

Enjoy reading,
Simon Moolenaar

Chair SNOWMAN Network


The SNOWMAN network received 8 proposals for its Fourth Research Call. During the process the proposals were discussed and ranked by an international peer review panel on15th March 2013 in Paris. In the recommendation meeting in Brussels on 26th March 2013, the Call 4 Steering Committee (C4SC) discussed the list of ranked proposals and spread the projects over  three categories. From the total of 8 project proposals evaluated, 3 projects were conditionally recommended for funding, 1 project was put on hold on the reserve list and 4 projects were rejected. The research coordinators of the 3 projects “conditionally recommended” were asked to send a revised version of their proposal together with a format answering all questions asked for clarifications, based on the peer review results and the C4SC exchanges. On  May 3rd the revised proposals were evaluated again by a number of peer reviewers. The C4SC had a final recommendation meeting on May 23rd 2013. The final decision was to reject 5 project proposals and to recommend 3 projects for funding.

These projects are:
BALANCE4P: Balancing decisions for urban brownfield regeneration - people, planet, profit and processes
RAI SOILCOMP: Raising Awareness on the Impact of subSOIL COMPaction.
URBAN SOIL: Relationship between City-Dwellers and soils: How to use urban and Peri-urban soils to face the urban challenge?

It has become a tradition that SNOWMAN organises a November meeting.

On the 19th and 20th of November in Paris at Les Salons du Relais we will organize two days of knowledge exchange!  
All SNOWMAN members, funders, researchers, peer reviewers and all interested in the SNOWMAN projects are welcome to join us in Paris.
Please contact the SNOWMAN secretariat: info@snowmannetwork.com

The preliminary agenda
November 19th 2013:
Final results of the SNOWMAN  Call 2 projects – INSPECT, REJUVENATE 2 and MCA .

Midterm results of the Call 3 projects on contamination: IMagH, PACMAN and IBRACS.

November 20th, 2013
Midterm results of  the Call 3 projects ECOSOM, SUSTAIN and SAS-STRAT

Kick-off meeting of the Call 4 project, BALANCE 4P, RAI SOILCOMP, URBAN SOIL.

More details on this meeting will be published in September.


In the SNOWMAN Special Session, on AquaConsoil the mapping and use of existing knowledge was central to the discussion. SNOWMAN has developed its Landscape, but we do not think that mapping is enough to stimulate the use of all the available information and knowledge. In the session at AquaConsoil we showed that knowledge exchange throughout the duration of a project pays off. Ongoing projects are enriched by the exchange. This is a theme that we will elaborate further in our activities.


SNOWMAN has taken upon itself to disseminate not only SNOWMAN research results but also existing knowledge. We think that a lot of research results are not used to its fullest potential. Just because we do not even know that it is available. To be able to disseminate knowledge SNOWMAN first had to map the existing knowledge. We did that by building a simple database. What distinguishes the landscape from other mapping schemes is the fact that we labeled all research questions and the SNOWMAN projects to the research questions from the SNOWMAN research agenda. As SNOWMAN is a network of funders each of the partners is also involved in National programmes. So the next step we took was to label the projects of our own national programmes and this resulted in a SNOWMAN landscape. 


Now we have upgraded our database to a more user-friendly version and we would like to invite all researchers and funders to add projects on www.snowmanlandscape.com
For all questions please contact Ingrid.vanreijsen@skbodem.nl . Task team leader Knowledge dissemination.

In the near future SNOWMAN will start with knowledge dissemination activities concerning these research questions, so make sure you are participating!


For the upcoming period the SNOWMAN Knowledge dissemination team is planning several events:

The SNOWMAN network wants to enhance national coordination and collaboration between MS for joint programming to get soil issues higher on the agenda of the EC as a cross cutting theme to address the Horizon 2020 societal challenges.

SNOWMAN has therefore proposed, together with the European Commission (EC-DG-RTD), to organise a Dialogue Session on Soil and Land Management in Europe. The Title of our session is "Building momentum for sustainable use and management of land in Europe with special emphasis on soil as a natural resource within Horizon 2020". Our objective is to initiate and investigate the possibilities to build strong transnational and subnational collaboration on sustainable soil management in Europe.

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