"Pressing questions in palaeoecology" - Workshop

Past Event

13 December 2012, 10:00am 14 December 2012 - 6:00pm

Department of Zoology
11a Mansfield Road, Oxford OX1 3SZ

This workshop is hosted by the Biodiversity Institute

Summary: Palaeoecology uses biological evidence from fossil assemblages to investigate the past distribution and abundance of species, communities and ecosystems, providing the tools to investigate ecological processes on annual to millennial timescales. A long-term perspective provides valuable insights in understanding the dynamics and functioning of contemporary ecological systems, covering aspects such as succession, stability, and niche conservatism. But what are the research questions that palaeoecologists need to tackle if we are to address key ecological issues during the Anthropocene? What methodological improvements are required to ensure that ecology and palaeoecology are more closely aligned? This workshop will identify the 50 pressing questions that can drive a new research agenda in palaeoecology.

Participation information: There are two ways to participate, either by submitting questions that you would like to be considered at the workshop, or by attending the workshop itself. If you choose to attend the workshop, you will be allocated one of five specialist working groups (see below) which will discuss a list of submitted questions grouped around a specific theme. On the afternoon of day 2, a plenary session will be used to vote to determine the 50 questions of most relevance to palaeoecology. The conveners will compile this into a co-authored manuscript (authored by all attendees of the workshop) and submit for publication.

Applications to attend the workshop are welcome from any palaeoecologist/ ecologist working in any of the following themes:

  1. Human-environment interactions.
  2. Ecology over long timescales.
  3. Novel ecosystems and ecological adaptation.
  4. Measures of uncertainty within palaeoecology.
  5. Approaches to palaeoecology.

To submit a question: We are requesting that researchers from the Ecological/ Quaternary Science community submit the questions that are of importance to them, by 31st October 2012. These will be compiled into a long-list, which will be refined both before and during the workshop. Questions can be submitted by following the link here. All contributions will be acknowledged.

To attend the workshop: If you would like to participate in the 50 Pressing Questions in Palaeoecology workshop, please complete an application form and return it to apply.palaeo50@zoo.ac.uk by 14th September 2012.

For further information on how to submit questions or apply to attend the workshop click here.