Tasters: 30/01/2018

Hi all,

I have been in Davos a few times; two of my collaborators work and live there. Quite place. Stunning as well. And it is home to a world-leading institute for snow research. At the end of January, Davos hosts the World Economic Forum. At this year’s forum, the effects of extreme climate event and the loss of biodiversity have been identified as areas of great concern (see global risks landscape for 2018 below). An excerpt of the report can be found here. Are politics finally moving? I am slightly optimistic!


Last week, we introduced 15 new Associate Editors for Functional Ecology. What has not yet been mentioned is that the list of Associate Editors for the journal now consists of 54% men and 46% woman. I quickly analysed these numbers, and the gender balance in the FE editorial board is rather good (Chi^2 = 0.71, P = 0.40).

Staying with the equality, Nature reports on a study that analysed what happens when reviewers focus just on the science when they review grants. In such case, gender bias fades. When asked to also judge the scientist, woman still loose out. See the report here, and the original paper here.

On Dynamic Ecology, Meghan Duffy shared a thought-provoking blog describing the wider impact of sexual harassment and calls out for a change in the lab cultures. Slightly related, the Guardian had an interesting item on bullying in academia.

If you happen to work in peatlands, and your work is of importance to the conservation of Irish peatlands, the Dutch Foundation for Irish Peatbogs, has a grant call open. They fund up to €2k; preference is given to early career researchers.

Enjoy your week,


Bjorn Robroek is the blog editor for Functional Ecologists.bjorn

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