Amid growing interest in leveraging nature-based solutions to mitigate the intensities of climate change, an alliance of ecologists, engineers and insurance experts has endeavored to determine the true (dollar) value of coastal habitats as natural defenses and to translate that value into risk-reduction incentives for conservation or restoration efforts.
By linking the unique knowledge and resources of these otherwise disconnected sectors, they are creating a win-win-win for insurance companies, communities and nature.
The idea of Planetary Boundaries has had remarkable influence on how scientists and policymakers think about the earth’s capacity to support humanity. Yet, the framework largely ignores something that covers two-thirds of the planet – our oceans.
According to a new paper, published October 24th in Nature Ecology and Evolution, the near absence of oceans from the framework, which focuses primarily on land-based systems, is a major oversight that limits our understanding of the planet’s actual boundaries and the framework’s usefulness for policy.
Like many early career scientists who come to NCEAS, Skylar Hopkins began her scientific journey as a “muddy boots ecologist.” Unlike many others, her initial career aspirations were not in science, but in history and elementary education.
An avid caver, an experience she likens to being an astronaut, and blogger about parasites, Hopkins is one of the newer faces at NCEAS who brings a perspective that surely adds to the diversity of people who make up our community.
A recent paper published in Biological Conservation provides a conceptual framework for how aquaculture could be leveraged to help conserve species and ecosystems, underscoring its potentially significant role in achieving conservation objectives across the globe.
Soil organic matter is a massive storehouse for carbon, as well as a key regulator of nutrient cycling and soil quality in terrestrial ecosystems, yet ecology lacks a full understanding of the controls on stabilization and breakdown of soil organic matter. This group’s goal is to refine and evaluate different soil organic matter stabilization theories and to produce a dataset that encompasses the impact of experimental manipulations on soil organic matter at different sites.
Henry L. Gholz, of Fort Collins, CO, died rock climbing in Colorado on September 30, 2017.
Henry Gholz’s passing is a tragic loss for ecology. Henry was a prominent ecosystem scientist who also had a stellar career in research administration and leadership. As a National Science Foundation (NSF) Program Director in Ecosystems Studies, he helped to shape ecological science in lasting ways. His visionary and outstanding guidance of interdisciplinary teams in NSF’s Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program became an international model for ecological research. His oversight of NCEAS, the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, allowed ecological research to flourish in new ways, helping to make NCEAS an exemplar for ecological synthesis all over the world.
NCEAS has been on the frontlines of the open data movement, supporting the creation of tools to enable researchers, practitioners and decision-makers to locate, analyze and repeat.
Here’s a brief look at tools that have emerged from our work - and from the challenges of working with big data, as experienced by our own researchers.
Hopefully, you aren’t thinking spam. For the real answer, a new paper in the journal Fish and Fisheries found correlations between a rise in multi-author publications and the rise of email, the Internet, and NCEAS.
In other words, there is something to email and the working group model that facilitated broader collaborations among scientists, which may also contribute to citation rates.
When artist Elkpen began her work on a mural to cover an oddly shaped wall and adjacent pillar in the NCEAS lounge, she had over 50 pages of vignettes and illustrations about the ideas behind the Center to guide her. At completion in September, her chalky white drawings upon a chalkboard-like wall convey an intricate and whimsical interpretation of how NCEAS works to advance science, build community and shape our world.
Elkpen, whose pen name does have a story behind it, is a Los Angeles-based street artist whose wall drawings and “public intervention” projects can be found throughout southern California and scattered beyond the Golden State. Her mural at AVA Santa Barbara, a wine-tasting room, was what inspired NCEAS executive director Ben Halpern to approach her about livening up our lounge, a central space with many uses and lots of traffic.