Welcome to Sweden

No, not Greg Poehler’s short-lived international sitcom by the same name, but very literally what the hotel clerk said when I checked in. He smiled; since I’d been practicing on Duolingo for a few weeks and had hoped to proudly correctly pronounce Tack så mycket and instead replied (translated) “you’re welcome,” I did not. Blame the jet lag.

Nonetheless, greetings from AF-Borgen on the campus of Lund University in Lund, Sweden, in the southwest of the country, a short train ride from Copenhagen and quite a long one from Stockholm. I’m here to represent ESA at the annual meeting of the Nordic Society Oikos, who have been a regular presence at our Annual Meetings and were kind to invite us to attend and exhibit at theirs as well.

Lund University in Lund, Sweden

Just one intensely picturesque view of Lund University in the city’s historic district

I love attending other societies’ events—as an official Humanities Guy, I get jazzed meeting new people and talking with them about their passions—but despite having been to no shortage of meetings ranging from entomology to landscape architecture in my time with ESA, this was my first actually-exclusively-theirs other country’s ecological society meeting.

It’s the Nordic Society Oikos, so of course attendees are primarily from the Nordic countries; though, as an international research community, the “attendees from the Nordic countries” include nationals of Ghana, Colombia, China and Portugal as well, plus a few U.S.-born ESA members. They’re presenting on microbial research in Greenland, restoration projects in the Faroe Islands, climate change impacts on boreal forests … very northern topics to be sure, but extremely relevant in our current environment. I already had several impassioned conversations about the importance of our new Climate Adaptation Section, for instance, and our newest journal, Earth Stewardship, was very well-received.

Big thanks to our friends in Oikos for being phenomenal hosts and putting on a lively, vitally important exchange of scientific and professional knowledge. I’m glad I was able to attend, and I look forward to connecting more with this community of ecologists.

Editor’s note: Jon actually wrote this on the train back to Copenhagen, NOT while still in Lund.

the ESA booth at the Oikos meeting

Our exhibit at Oikos; significantly tidier than my actual work environment