Forest Canopy as Integral Part of Conservation and Biogeography at International Canopy Conference    Xishuangbanna, Yunnan, China 15-19 October 2023

The venue: Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Menglun, Xishuangbanna, China


The canopy is the defining component of any forest ecosystem and harbors a large share of global biodiversity. The canopy community is vital for its essential role in ecosystem functions and services. The development of new technologies and infrastructure, such as remote sensing and a global network of canopy cranes, have propelled canopy science into a new era. Canopy science is now undergoing an exciting, radical change of approach from descriptive studies to experimental manipulations. However, there remain many challenges in understanding canopy systems in order to make predictions about the consequences of global-scale human disturbances and their impact on forest ecosystems.

The International Canopy Conference is held every four years and aims to showcase the latest advances in the field of canopy science and to promote future research directions in canopy ecology and other related disciplines. The 8th International Canopy Conference will be held at Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG), Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yunnan Province, China, from the 15th to 19th October 2023 under the theme entitled “The (Forest) Canopy as an Integral Part of Conservation and Biogeography”. Please note that the conference was originally planned for October 2020; however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference has been postponed several times. We are pleased to announce that the conference will be entirely onsite (i.e., in “traditional” style), and we look forward to seeing you in person!


Interested in attending?

Please email at: with your name, email address and affiliation

Important Days

  • 16th June 2023: Deadline for Early Bird and Abstract Submission
  • 22nd September 2023: Deadline for Normal Registration Payment
  • 15th October 2023: Registration and Opening Ceremony

Host institutes:

  • page2image15532032 Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)
  • page2image15532240 Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences (XTBG)
Co-organising association:
  • Japan Association of Tropical Ecology (JASTE)




Main symposia

  • Vertical stratification of forest biodiversity (Chair: Brett Scheffers, Univ Florida, USA)
  • Species interactions in the forest canopy (Chair: Frans Bongers, Wageningen University, Netherlands)
  • Canopy-atmosphere interactions (Chair: Han WANG, Tsinghua University, China)
  • Biogeography and the forest canopies (Chair: Louise ASHTON, Hong Kong University, China)
  • Remote sensing for canopy science (Chair: Jin WU, Hong Kong University, China)
  • Roles of the forest canopy in environmental education (Chair: Margaret LOWMAN, California Academy of Sciences, USA)
  • Forest canopies, food and society (Chair: Ryo KOHSAKA, Nagoya University, Japan)



Language: English

Plenary Oral Presentations: We will invite one or two renowned researchers as plenary speakers for each symposium (30 mins each plus 10 mins of question time).

Oral Presentations and Posters: Each symposium will host 10-12 speakers (15 mins each including 3 mins of question time) and 3-7 poster presentations (A0 size: 1189 mm × 841 mm, 33.1 × 46.8 inch).

Abstract submission for oral and poster presentations: Abstract should be prepared on a A4 size document (1.5 line spacing) with title, author names (first and FAMILY names, with presenting author name highlighted in bold), affiliations with address, and email address of corresponding author. Four to six keywords should also be provided. Abstract should be written in English and word limit is 300 words. Please use the abstract template attached below.

Student Oral and Poster Presentation Awards: If you are a student or postdoc, please notify us in the abstract to be eligible for oral and poster presentation awards. Please use the abstract template attached to indicate your eligibility.

Small Group Discussion Sessions: We will have small group discussion sessions to set the future research directions and to facilitate international and inter-disciplinary collaboration.

Public Lecture by Professor Roger Kitching: We will invite one highly inspirational ecologist capable of interacting and communicating with the general public to tell the stories of our work and to raise conservation awareness. We will invite local schools around XTBG and other visitors.

Forest Canopy Art Festival: We will host a venue to showcase artwork related to forest canopies. Any photographic, painting, handcraft work are welcome! Please inform if you are interested in showcasing your artwork!

Excursion: We will organise a trip to visit Xishuangbanna Forest Dynamic Plot (affiliated to XTBG, ForestGEO, CForBio) and the canopy crane on the 26th October 2020 (Day 3 of the conference). The excursion fees (not included in the registration fees) will be announced in due course.

Scholarships: We aim to raise funding to support some students to travel and attend the conference. However, the number of scholarships will be announced once we confirm the amount of funding raised for this purpose. Scholarships for the tree climbing training course will also be available.


Pre-conference Workshop (12th – 16th October 2023)

Workshop by Gbadamassi G.O. DOSSA and Hans CORNELISSEN on “Integrating carbon and water cycling of trees vs. lianas from life to afterlife” will be held for invited contributors to achieve a greater understanding of both water and carbon cycles with regard to specific differences between self-standing trees and lianas. In addition, the workshop will address future avenues for integrating water and carbon cycles.


Post-conference Activities (Dates TBA)

Two tree climbing training courses will be held by Jamiluddin JAMI (Levels 1 and 2, certified by Rope skills Rigging SDN BHD) and Tim KOVAR (Tree Climbing Planet, approved by Tree Climbers International) as post-conference workshops. The course fees will be announced in due course. The number of participants is limited (around five participants per class) and, if the number of applications exceeds the limit, we will choose the participants by drawing lots.




Invited Speakers

Plenary speakers:

  • Forest canopy biodiversity
    • Professor Vojtech NOVOTNY (TO BE CONFIRMED), Czech Academy of Sciences and University of South Bohemia, Czech Republic
    • Professor David ELLSWORTH (TO BE CONFIRMED), WesternSydney University, Australia
  • Functional roles of forest canopy
    • Professor Hans CORNELISSEN (TO BE CONFIRMED), Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherland
    • Dr Han WANG (CONFIRMED), TsinghuaUniversity, China Anthropogenic disturbance in the forest canopy
    • Dr Stefan A. SCHNITZER (TO BE CONFIRMED), Marquette University, USA Dr Brett SCHEFFERS (TO BE CONFIRMED), University of Florida, USA
  • Remote sensing for canopy science
    • Dr Jin WU (CONFIRMED), Hong Kong University, China Roles of forest canopy in environmental education
    • Dr Margaret LOWMAN (TO BE CONFIRMED), California Academy of Sciences, USA
  • Canopy access techniques and new technologies for canopy science
    • Professor Min CAO (CONFIRMED), Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China

Public lecture speaker:

Professor Roger L. KITCHING (TO BE CONFIRMED), Griffith University, Australia


Map of XTBG and surrounds: