Report of progress and activities in prior appointment period:

1 September 1996 - 31 August 1997
Kathryn L. Cottingham

I have spent the past year pursuing three major activities:

The project on early warning indicators is still in its very early stages - I am preparing a comprehensive review of the literature on this issue and am exploring several strategies for developing simulation models to evaluate anticipatory indicators. I expect that this project will form the centerpiece of my second year of postdoctoral study.

The Community Dynamics Working Group has made a great deal of progress. We had a short brainstorming meeting in October 1996 and a longer, two-week meeting in January 1997. Between meetings, Fiorenza Micheli and I created a SAS database for chemical and biological data on 28 lakes sampled by 5 different research groups. I spent the January meeting coordinating database corrections, writing computer programs to fit multivariate autoregressive models, and participating in group discussions to refine our research questions. Immediately after the meeting, Fio and I made all datasets available to the group through the World Wide Web. Since then, I have been using the database to explore patterns in the variability of zooplankton community structure in manipulated vs. unmanipulated lakes; this work will be presented at the Ecological Society of America meeting in August. The working group will meet for a third time in November 1997, and I expect to take the lead on 1 or 2 publications after this meeting.

I made considerable progress in publishing research conducted while I was a graduate student. I had three papers accepted, including two from a mesocosm experiment I co-directed during the summer of 1992. In addition, 2 manuscripts from my dissertation are currently in review, and a third is in revision. I am also working on 4 other manuscripts that will be submitted during fall 1997; 2 of these are from collaborative projects initiated since I arrived at NCEAS.

Finally, I presented the results of my research both locally and nationally. I gave a guest lecture to a UCSB environmental studies class, and delivered colloquium talks at UCSB, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Washington. In addition, I was an invited symposium speaker at the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography meeting in February, and will present a poster at the Ecological Society of America meeting in August.