NCEAS Working Group on Population Management

Working group conveners:

Shea, Katriona CSIRO Division of Entomology, Australia
Mangel, Marc University of California, Santa Cruz
Possingham, Hugh University of Adelaide, Australia

Working group participants:

Amarasekare, Priyanga University of California, Irvine
Kareiva, Peter University of Washington
Moore, Joslin Imperial College, Silwood Park
Murdoch, William University of California, Santa Barbara
Noonburg, Erik University of California, Santa Barbara
Parma, Ana International Pacific Halibut Commission
Pascual, Miguel University of Washingtion
Wilcox, Chris University of California, Santa Cruz
Yu, Douglas Harvard University


Conservation, harvesting and pest control are three aspects of the same general problem: population management. Nevertheless the three sub-disciplines have very distinct histories, literature and theory and often use different approaches in addressing relevant problems. The aim of the working group was to stimulate an examination of these fields, in order to provide both a theoretical synthesis, and insight for those with practical management problems.


The working group met over four weeks from 27th July to 24th August 1997. Most members were present the entire time, with a few short absences for the ESA meeting in Albuquerque. The members of the working group comprised a roughly equal mix of senior and junior researchers. Participants spent the first two days of the meeting identifying common themes and approaches from the three fields, as well as fundamental differences between them. Then a number of topics and areas of interest were prioritized and the group split into smaller project groups to work on these. In addition, the entire group met daily for about an hour to:


The principal objectives of the working group are being met in two general review papers. Adaptive management arose as a unifying theme that needed a special review, while a more general review examines the present status and future directions of the sub-disciplines of population management. A series of more specific projects arose from our initial discussions and seminars. These are also being prepared for publication and will all list the NCEAS as their address.


Specific papers

The two reviews are almost complete. The remainder are in first draft or still require more analysis of models or the literature. We also plan to submit a brief meeting report to the ESA Bulletin.