Insite/Out with the TeaComposition H2O Initiative: 3

It’s been a while since I’ve touched base about the TeaComposition H2O initiative. To recap, this global initiative aims to understand long-term aquatic decomposition and carbon cycling in seagrass meadows, mangrove forests, tidal marshes, all types of freshwater wetlands as well as lakes, ponds and streams. In using household tea as pseudo-plant litter, we can standardised the starting material, which gives us the power to tease apart the larger-scale drivers that influence decomposition, like climate, inundation and habitat type. Continue reading “Insite/Out with the TeaComposition H2O Initiative: 3”

Insights: Anamarija Žagar

In Insights we discover the story behind a recent publication in Functional Ecology. What inspired the authors to do the research and how did the project develop before the publication? and what wider impact might their work have?

This week, Anamarija Žagar talks to Bjorn about her paper on the performance of two co-existing lizards in Slovenia and the role of functional and morphological traits. Anamarija currently works at the National institute of Biology in Slovenia, and is also affiliated as a research associate to the CIBIO Research Centre in Biodiversity and Genetic Resources at the University of Porto in Portugal.

Continue reading “Insights: Anamarija Žagar”

Tuesday taster: 19/09/2017

With the new academic year starting, an interesting study shows that small group seminars are most effective in preventing students to drop out of university.

A runner myself, I liked this BBC coverage on running in the wilds of the Scottish Highlands, where (perhaps this week) the oldest snow patch may disappear.

Following up on my blog for Peer Review Week 2017, researchers from Imperial College London, the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, and the University of Michigan, have teamed up to come up with a tool that may safeguard peer review, while making it more effective.

Also, Nature now offers a masterclass on peer review.

 

Bjorn Robroek is the blog editor for Functional Ecologists.bjorn

 

Peer Review Week: Thoughts from a researcher

It is peer review week, a week in which we celebrate the review process and acknowledge the work of reviewers, and celebrate the review process that is the beating heart of science communication. There are many arguments why reviewing is necessary to do, but can it also benefit you as a reviewer? And if you review, what are your responsibilities? Below I give my vision on these aspects.

Bjorn

Continue reading “Peer Review Week: Thoughts from a researcher”

Peer review and publishing workshops from the BES

For Peer Review week, the BES Publications Team are discussing about various aspects of peer review, and how we make the process more transparent. Yesterday, methods.blog launched their new Peer Reviewer Mentoring Scheme, but the Publications Team have a number of other ways of opening up peer review and helping people get the most out of their published paper. Continue reading “Peer review and publishing workshops from the BES”

Insights: Florian Altermatt

In Insights we discover the story behind and beyond a recent publication in Functional Ecology. What inspired the authors to do the research, how did the project develop and what implications might their results have on the scientific community and on society?

This week, we talk to Florian Altermatt from Eawag (the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology) in Dübendorf, Switzerland, and the Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, and corresponding author on Leaf litter diversity and structure of microbial decomposer communities modulate litter decomposition in aquatic systems (plain language summary here.)

Continue reading “Insights: Florian Altermatt”

Tuesday taster: 05/09/2017

Featured in Functional Ecology this week is a paper by Yunhai Zhang and his colleagues, which describes how mowing reduces the stability of temperate grassland primary production under nitrogen addition. Very interesting read!

If you are following the debate on gender equality and woman in STEM, here are some good recent reads:

… and you can support those who actively voice the problem: https://500womenscientists.org

In the coffee corner of my workplace someone has put up a paper which discusses some lifestyle changes that can help you reduce your carbon emissions (Wynes & Nicholas 2017 Environ. Res. Lett. 12:074024;). In the graph below, you can see the average (and country specific) potentials for reduction for some lifestyle actions.

figure1.jpg

Family size reduction is number one, but I find that a tricky one. It seems a bit ‘black and white’ to me. The transport/travel actions are thought provoking. A happy bicycle commuter myself, I am all in favour of more bikes on the road (or is it my Dutch genes?), but I understand this is not possible for all of us. One of the things you could think of though is how to travel to your next conference. I will travel to the next British Ecological Society meeting in Ghent by train from Southampton (UK). Why not do the same?

Enjoy your week,

Bjorn

Bjorn Robroek is the blog editor for Functional Ecologists.bjorn

 

Insights: Sean Gleason

In Insights we discover the story behind and beyond a recent publication in Functional Ecology. What inspired the authors to do the research, how did the project develop and what implications might their results have on the scientific community and on society?

This week, Sean Gleason from the Water Management and Systems Research Unit, USDA-ARS, Fort Collins, USA will illustrate his recent paper on predicting shrub and tree growth from plant traits (read the free plain language summary here.)

Continue reading “Insights: Sean Gleason”

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