Keynote speakers

The 17th EGC is pleased to welcome three keynote speakers.  

Alfonso San Miguel

Department of Natural Systems and Resources, Polytechnic University of Madrid

(Madrid, Spain)

Title: Diversity, management and conservation of natural and semi-natural grasslands in Spain

Alfonso San Miguel is full professor at the Department of Natural Systems and Resources, Polytechnic University of Madrid. He is a member of the Spanish Society of Pastures (President between 2010-2014) and the Spanish Society of Geobotany. He is also the Director of the National Parks Chair. His research topic is management and conservation of natural and semi-natural grasslands and rangelands and their associated biodiversity: flora and fauna. Some of his latest works deal with typology of natural and semi-natural grasslands in Spain, Types of Habitats of Community Interest and wild ungulate carrying capacity and management in Natural Protected Areas.

In his keynote lecture in EGC 2020, San Miguel will offer an overview of the diversity of natural and semi-natural grasslands in Spain and their associated biodiversity, and on their conservation status after the changes in their management during the last decades.

ResearchGate profile:


Monika Janišová

Institute of Botany, Slovak Academy of Sciences

(Banská Bystrica, Slovakia)

Title: Species-rich semi-natural grasslands of Europe – historical masterpieces of human-nature interaction

Monika Janišová is a vegetation ecologist focusing mainly on grasslands, their classification, biodiversity, succession, management and conservation. She is also interested in biogeography and endemism, as well as population biology and conservation of rare plants. Recently, the main subject of her research includes traditional ecological knowledge, bio-cultural heritage and sustainable agriculture in the Carpathian Mountains (Central and Eastern Europe).

In her keynote lecture she will  talk about one of the phenomenal examples are species-rich secondary grasslands of Europe, which were formed as a consequence of the low-intensity farming.  Through several examples from the Carpathian Mountains, she will demonstrate: i) the importance of a deep knowledge of local history and traditions, which lead to the formation of each particular grassland; ii) the risks associated with substitution of traditional grassland management practices by their modern analogies; iii) the irreplaceable role of domestic animals in grassland conservation. Additionally, she will highlight approaches inspired by ancestors (based on traditional ecological knowledge) that could help to keep/increase grassland diversity for descendants.

ResearchGate profile:



Frank Yonghong Li

School of Ecology and Environment, Inner Mongolia University

(Hohhot, China)

Title: Patterns, dynamics and conservation of the steppes on the Mongolian Plateau

Frank Yonghong Li (PhD 1992, Montpellier) is professor and dean of the School of Ecology and Environment, Inner Mongolia University, China. His research career includes many years in the Institute of Botany of Chinese Academy of Sciences (Beijing) and New Zealand AgResearch- Grasslands Research Center (Palm. North). His current research covers biodiversity conservation, ecosystem processes and multifunctioning, and restoration and adaptive management of grassland ecosystems under climate and land-use change.

In his keynote lecture, Professor Yonghong Li will summarize the patterns and dynamics of the vast and continuous easternmost part of the Eurasian steppe, based on his field research experiences. He will discuss species diversity and vegetation dynamics in relation with climate and land-use changes, and present the status of, and the challenges for, the conservation and sustainable management of the prestigious natural grasslands.

 ResearchGate profile: