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National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis

Project Description

Drought impacts on terrestrial ecosystems have increased globally over the last century with models forecasting that droughts will become more frequent, extreme, and spatially extensive. The goals for this project are to synthesize results from a unique global network of drought manipulations, focusing on how ecosystem productivity responds to drought over time and key mechanisms (changes in plant composition) underlying these impacts. We propose to host a series of working groups to synthesize an existing multi-year dataset from the International Drought Experiment (IDE). The IDE is a coordinated, global network of extreme drought experiments at >100 sites, including eight LTER and four ILTER sites. The objectives for these synthesis meetings include: 1) analyzing how short-term drought affects ecosystem sensitivity patterns (i.e. the relationship between plant production and precipitation), 2) identifying how aboveground productivity and plant species composition (abundance, richness, evenness, re-ordering) change in response to a 4-year drought, and 3) determine how shifts in plant species composition indirectly affects the sensitivity of productivity to drought over time.

Group of researchers on the terrace

Principal Investigator(s)

Kate Wilkins, Laureano A. Gherardi, Osvaldo E. Sala, Melinda D. Smith, Peter Wilfahrt

Project Dates

Start: January 9, 2020



Maggie Anderson
University of Minnesota
Meghan L. Avolio
Johns Hopkins University
Angel Chen
University of California, Santa Barbara
Anping Chen
Colorado State University
Scott L. Collins
University of New Mexico
Jeffrey S. Dukes
Purdue University
Andrew J Felton
Montana State University
Laureano A. Gherardi
University of California, Berkeley
Martin Holdrege
Utah State University
Alan K. Knapp
Colorado State University
Kimberly J. Komatsu
University of North Carolina
Smriti Limbu
Johns Hopkins University
Nick Lyon
University of California, Santa Barbara
Seth M. Munson
US Geological Survey (USGS)
Timothy Ohlert
Colorado State University
Richard Phillips
Indiana University
Osvaldo E. Sala
Arizona State University
Ingrid Slette
University of California, Santa Barbara
Melinda D. Smith
Colorado State University
Peter Wilfahrt
University of Minnesota
Kate Wilkins
Denver Zoo at City Park