|About the Ecological Visions Project|
Ecological knowledge is critical to identifying solutions for the complex environmental and health challenges that are facing our globe. Despite its relevance to society, ecological science is not well understood by the public and is under-utilized by decision makers.
How can ecologists and ESA help ecological science become an integral part of the public discourse on society and the environment?
ESA's Sustainable Biosphere Initiative (SBI Report) began a decade ago and stimulated ecologists to define the major environmental problems and ecological research frontiers. Three major areas of ecological research were highlighted: ecological aspects of climate change, the ecology and conservation of biodiversity, and ecological strategies for a sustainable biosphere.
While many groups have developed lists or reports of the crucial ecological or environmental science research needs, it is difficult to identify what actions have come out of these activities.
The leadership of the Ecological Society of America wants to move beyond generating lists of research priorities or agendas, to identifying those actions required to realize such agendas.
Now it is time to take a fresh look at the future of ecological science - where are we going and how will we get there?
Who's behind this initiative?
The ESA Governing Board created the Ecological Visions committee in Fall 2002. The group was charged with identifying actions that would accelerate the progress of Ecology in tackling the big scientific challenges and increase the visibility and influence of ecological science in the next decade.
The Ecological Visions committee is composed of 21 scientists and supporting staff: Margaret Palmer (Chair), Emily Bernhardt (post-doctoral associate), Scott Collins, Liz Chornesky, Andy Dobson, Cliff Duke (ESA), Jim Ehleringer, Barry Gold, Robb Jacobson, Sharon Kingsland, Rhonda Kranz (ESA), Mike Mappin, Fiorenza Micheli, Jen Morse (U-MD staff), Mike Pace, Mercedes Pascual, Steve Palumbi, Jim Reichman, Bill Schlesinger, Alan Townsend, and Monica Turner.
The group has met twice since January 2003 and has two more meetings scheduled in 2003. In addition, a public discussion session will be held during the ESA Annual Meeting in Savannah in August 2003.
What are the project's goals?
Our Vision Statement represents the framework for the five major focus areas (Visions) we have defined. Each Vision will have specific actions associated with it: We wish to develop a series of action plans that will stimulate revolutionary changes in our community to:
Why is the time right?
Visionary action themes ("Visions"):
How will the Visions and Actions be identified?
The group is soliciting input from ESA members and interested parties to improve and refine this effort. In particular, we want to identify specific actions that ESA can take or help realize to implement these visions.
Please visit our feedback pages to learn more about each Vision and provide your ideas. We would like your feedback by August 20 to incorporate in our late August committee meeting.
Check this website for updates on the project and further opportunities to provide input.
Join us for a Discussion Session at ESA 2003 in Savannah.
|| About the Project | Provide Your Ideas! | Committee Members | Discussion at ESA 2003 | Reference Documents | SBI Report ||