lunes, 10 de septiembre de 2012

Lessons from All Scientists Meeting LTER: You need a conceptual framework

We (@ajpelu, @rperezperez and @fjbonet) are in the All Scientists Meeting organized by US-LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) in Estes Park (Colorado). These evening we had the opportunity to enjoy the site science lightning plenary. This means that each of 26 sites had to present itself in 2 minutes using 2 slides. A great exercise of synthesis that is possible only if you have the wisdom and the expertise of some decades monitoring the impacts of global change. We have been there, trying to learn, acting as Martians that have just landed in an unknown planet ;)

One of the first lessons that we have learnt is the importance of a conceptual model that should be the inspiring framework of any LTER site. Most of the presentations have showed the scientific questions that drive each site and also the overarching ideas that help to implement both the monitoring protocols and the data analysis.

Most of the conceptual framework outlined in the sessions have these ingredients:
  1. Scientific questions. Monitoring must be "science driven".
  2. Standardized  monitoring protocols 
  3. Analytical tools able to both describe cause-effect relationships and simulate ecosystem function.
  4. Methods to describe the importance of ecosystem services supplied by LTER site.
We have taken some low quality pictures of the above mentioned presentations. You can browse them below.

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