The UNESCO Global Geoparks, due to their characteristics and the value of their heritage, are true "open-air" laboratories, where scientists, students, teachers and citizens can contribute to the deepening of knowledge of the territory itself, investigating and producing knowledge in several areas, such as geology, biology, geography, climatology, environment, society, landscape, among many others.
In this sense, these territories have sought to give special emphasis to this reality, affirming themselves as territories of Science, as a strategy and essential condition to achieve the main objective that led to their classification - Sustainable Development. However, the Science produced in these territories must be done with the participation of the populations (Citizen Science), putting it at the service of their problems and needs and making the results available in an open and accessible way (Open Science). The affirmation of the Geoparks as living laboratories approaches, in an effective way, Science to the populations, turning these last ones, actors of the knowledge.
For the above mentioned, the Portuguese UNESCO Global Geoparks consider that research and innovation may develop in a sustained growth path, contributing for the knowledge to become increasingly determinant for the territorial dynamics, for the competitiveness of the country on an international scale. Geoparks support Research through the facilitation of contacts with Research Centres, Teaching Institutions and local stakeholders. They provide guided tours and other support, subject to application, establish partnerships with local stakeholders, in order to promote and enhance the territory, and form networks of partners made up of members of the catering, hospitality, tourist entertainment and essential services (public administrative, public and private health services), which together allow a greater and better territorial experience allied to the needs of the Research to be carried out.
Aware of their dynamics and the importance they assume in their territories, the five UNESCO Geoparks in Portugal, in partnership with Turismo de Portugal, developed the Research Catalogue, which aims to demonstrate why these classified territories are spaces of knowledge and science, attracting more and more a significant number of researchers, national and international.
Find out more here Portuguese UNESCO Global Geoparks - Scientific Research