WK 23
At the Hub: Lessons Learned by Early-career Ecologists in Grassroots Research Networks

Monday, August 5, 2013: 11:30 AM-1:15 PM
101F, Minneapolis Convention Center
Eric M. Lind, University of Minnesota
Cayelan C. Carey, Virginia Tech
Eric M. Lind, University of Minnesota; Cayelan C. Carey, Virginia Tech; Pamela L. Reynolds, University of California; Sean McMahon, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute; and LoriAnne Barnett, USA National Phenology Network
Understanding globally sustainable pathways requires ecological research at large, interconnected scales, yet substantial institutional and funding limitations pose challenges for conducting truly global ecology. One solution is a grassroots approach, using networks of motivated and locally-funded scientists collaborating on a common set of questions. This “distributed ecology” strategy holds promise for answering continental-scale questions without the need for top-down global infrastructure, and has the benefit of increasing international collaboration amongst ecologists. However, distributed research networks have their own challenges in terms of coordination, communication, social interactions, data access and management, and authorship. This workshop presents a panel of early career ecologists who sit at the ‘hub’ of several different types of distributed research networks, all of which face very different challenges from the larger, more-coordinated networks, and as a result, are developing innovative solutions to these challenges. Early career ecologists from the Nutrient Network (NutNet), the Global Lakes Ecological Observatory Network (GLEON), the Zostera Experimental Network (ZEN), and National Phenology Network (NPN), among others, will share their perspectives during a panel discussion. We present this workshop as an opportunity for network coordinators to learn from each other, as well as to demonstrate the feasibility of the distributed approach for ecologists interested in starting their own research networks. By sharing the insights of early career scientists from each of the highlighted networks, we hope to demonstrate how distributed research approaches can be especially fruitful for ecologists at an early stage of their career.

Registration Fee: $0

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