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Diversity of varieties and diversity of farming systems as an asset for sustainable Mediterranean olive growing in a context of global change

The ClimOliveMed project acknowledges that tomorrow’s Mediterranean olive growing will have to link the issues of adaptation to climate change, biodiversity and sustainable production.Based on a partnership between academic and professional actors of the olive sector on the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean, we are betting on diversity as a bulwark against global changes: diversity of varieties, diversity of production systems and diversity of olive actors: olive growers, processors, olive interprofessions, genetic resources managers and researchers.


  • Understand the biological, economic and social factors for the sustainability of Mediterranean olive production in response to climate change.
  • Open new spaces of dialogue between the actors of the olive sector, research and international bodies for the design and management of adaptation strategies to climate change.


The strength of the ClimOliveMed project lies in our ambition to develop a comparative approach between contrasting olive growing situations in southern France and northern Morocco. This approach will be based on the study of the olive tree collections of Porquerolles (CBNMed France) & the world collection of Tassaout (INRA Morocco).

The project proposes to examine three fundamental questions:

  • How can varietal diversity serve as a response to climate change?
  • How can the diversity of cropping systems and value chains support sustainable transitions in olive production in the Mediterranean?
  • How to share and integrate the diversity of knowledge and genetic resources mobilized by stakeholders within the project but also at the territorial, national and international levels?

We wish to study these questions through an approach that is both interdisciplinary - between researchers in biological and agronomic sciences and researchers in economic and social sciences - and transdisciplinary - between researchers and managers of genetic resources, farmers, agricultural interprofessions and associations for the management and valorization of olive biodiversity. We believe that the success of ClimOliveMed is conditioned by the involvement and expertise of professional partners, complementary to scientific knowledge. The fair and equitable partnership and the building of mutual trust between the diversity of the project members is therefore a key issue.

Define the most relevant and easily measured phenotypic traits and associated genomic variants to characterize local genetic resources for (i) flowering traits and (ii) drought tolerance in order to identify the most adapted varieties to climate change.

To understand to what extent olive growers and stakeholders in the sector can mobilize the genetic and phenotypic potential of varieties to meet the challenges of climate change.

To open new spaces of deliberation with all interested parties to reflect on the diversity of strategies to fight against climate change and to make explicit the differences in representations of the problems of collective action.

  • Call for project
  • Start date :
    1 July 2021
  • Closing date :
    30 June 2025
  • Flagship project :
  • Responsable
    Bouchaib KHADARI ; Alexandre GUICHARDAZ
  • bouchaib.khadari@cirad.fr ; alexandre.guichardaz@cirad.fr
  • Research units in the network
Scientific partners:

Conservatoire Botanique National Méditerannéen (CBNMed)
France Olive - Interprofession
Académie des sciences et techniques Hassan II
Université Cadi Ayyad
Université Sultan Moulay Slimane
Université Abdelmalek Essaadi
INRA Maroc
IAV Hassan II
InterProlive (Interprofession Maroc)
Conseil international Oléicole (COI