News from the LTER-NCO: Late summer update

Santa Barbara shoreline and wharf header

August 30, 2017

It’s hard to believe the summer is almost gone and the academic year is starting. It was great to see such a strong LTER presence at the ESA Meetings—with a synthesis symposium, an urban LTER symposium, and over 150 talks and posters from across the Network.

The NCO has several important updates to share with the LTER community and site leadership teams that should not wait until the next scheduled News from the LTER-NCO.

LTER All Scientists’ Meeting

At the Network Communications Office, we’ve been working behind the scenes to confirm a date, location, and funding for the 2018 All-Scientists’ Meeting, which will be held:

September 30-October 4, 2018
Asilomar Conference Grounds, Pacific Grove, California

This is a change to the date I announced earlier in the News from the LTER-NCO newsletter. My sincere apologies to those who may have made plans based on the earlier date.

We will be able to fund travel, lodging, and registration for up to 7 people per LTER site, with an emphasis on early-career and under-represented researchers, plus information and education managers. I’ll be contacting Site PI’s later this fall to ask for your list. Meanwhile, please note the dates on your calendars and start brainstorming ideas for talks, synthesis groups, and workshops. We only get to gather the Network every 3 years; let’s make the most of it! If you have ideas for top-notch plenary speakers, please contact Marty Downs or Frank Davis until the planning committee is fully assembled.

New LTER logo

Logos redesigns can be difficult. It’s extraordinarily hard to capture the essence of an organization (particularly one as diverse as the LTER Network) in a single image, but it was time for an update. Working with a professional design team, the Network Communications Office developed several options for the LTER Executive Board to consider and also sought input from across the LTER community. We received over 280 responses to our survey, many with thoughtful and insightful comments.

In the end, we didn’t choose any one of the logos offered in the survey. Rather, we tried to incorporate the intent of the most frequent types of response. The LTER community wanted a logo that felt as warm and inviting as we try to be; that incorporated elements of both science and time; that said ecological research, not technological research…and that had a certain individuality and uniqueness.

The new LTER Network logo—as approved by the LTER executive board and NSF—is shown below. We truly appreciate all the thoughtful and constructive input from the Network. The NCO will begin incorporating it into materials and web sites gradually, with the major shift happening later this fall.

LTER logo 2017

Open Positions

Several key positions are opening up around the Network. Please circulate these announcements to qualified candidates:

To learn about LTER Network-related job openings as they arise, email downs@nceas.ucsb requesting to join opportunities@lternet.edu or visit our opportunities page.

Conferences and Special Issues

The Fall Meeting of the American Geosciences Union will be 11-15 December, 2017 in New Orleans.

The LTER Network Communications Office is gathering a listing of talks and papers, so please include LTER or Long-Term Ecological Research in your affiliation or abstract if at all possible. We’re also working with NSF Public Affairs to bring media attention to some of our most newsworthy stories. To give us a heads-up about your newsworthy paper, contact downs@nceas.ucsb.edu.

Newsletters

LTER Science update, issued monthly, provides brief, accessible summaries of recent science from across the Network. It is designed to inform partners, educators, and the broader ecological community as well as LTER Network scientists. Please share and encourage your colleagues to subscribe.

News from the NCO, issued quarterly, provides regular organizational updates to LTER-associated personnel.

From related organizations:

News from the NCO: 2017 Summer

Santa Barbara shoreline and wharf header

July 15, 2016

Governance Update

The LTER Science Council and Executive Board met at Hubbard Brook, May 16-19, where they welcomed representatives of three new LTER sites, discussed some great science, and made a few key decisions:

  • LTER bylaws have been revised to refer to the Network Communications Office (NCO), rather than the LTER Network Office (LNO) and to clarify the relationships among the LTER Executive Board, the Science Council, the Network Communications Office, and the Environmental Data Initiative (EDI).
  • The Director of the LTER Network Communications Office will hold a voting seat on the LTER Executive Board and the Director of the Environmental Data Initiative will hold an ex officio seat on the LTER Executive Board. The Information Management and Education and Outreach Committees will continue to hold non-voting seats on the LTER Executive Board and the LTER Science Council.
  • The Science Council approved a recommendation by the Executive Board to update the LTER data access policy to reflect the movement towards open and unrestricted access to data. When no specific access policy is specified for a data set, the LTER data portal will now default to  a Creative Commons license requiring attribution (CC BY 4.0).
  • We appreciate the service of  Anne Giblin (PIE), Gary Lovett (HBR), and Sherrie Johnson (AND), who rotated off the Executive Board, and welcome new (and returning) EB members: Katherine Suding (NWT), David Foster (HFR), and Jess Zimmerman (LUQ).
  • The LTER Information Management Committee is meeting before the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Annual Meeting in Bloomington, Indiana, July 24.

Synthesis Activities

In addition to the five synthesis working groups currently underway, the LTER Science Council is working on products emerging from the 2017 and 2018 Science Council meetings.

  • Peter Groffman is pulling together a set of papers from each site on LTER Futures for a special issue of Ecosphere.
  • A team led by Evelyn Gaiser is organizing a manuscript that will elaborate a framework for understanding humans as an integral part of ecosystems.

LTER at the Ecological Society of America (ESA) Meeting

A listing of talks and posters being presented at ESA will be available shortly. Meanwhile please plan on joining us for:

The NCO is organizing three workshops at ESA, and will be promoting REU opportunities at the Diversity Luncheon, but will not have a booth this year. Workshops:

Communications Trainings

Curriculum materials from the NCO’s  8-week online, interactive course in science communications are now available online at  Telling the Right Story, for the Right People, at the Right Time

Save the Dates

  • The 2018 Science Council/Executive Board Meeting will be hosted by the Northern Temperate Lakes LTER. Madison, here we come!
    • May 15: Executive Board
    • May 16 & 17: Science Council
    • May 18 (a.m.): PI Meeting
  • Tentative dates for the 2018 All-Scientists Meeting are September 9-13th, 2018 at Asilomar Conference Grounds.
  • Can’t keep track of key LTER dates? The NCO maintains a calendar with key committee and Network-wide meetings.

NCO Personnel Update

After 22 years of dedication to improving the availability and usability of environmental data, Mark Schildhauer is retiring from the the day-to-day management of NCEAS computing, but he’ll continue to apply his talents to a variety of special projects.

Open Positions

To learn about LTER Network-related job openings as they arise, email downs@nceas.ucsb requesting to join opportunities@lternet.edu or visit our opportunities page.

Conferences and Special Issues

Abstracts for the Fall 2018 American Geophysical Union (AGU) Meeting are due August 2 (July 26 for early submission). Please include LTER or Long-Term Ecological Research in your abstract to help us find and promote your talk.

Also, consider submitting an abstract to Public Affairs session 013: How Does Your Geoscience Research Matter and Can You Explain How it Matters to the Public?

Newsletters

LTER Science update, issued monthly, provides brief, accessible summaries of recent science from across the Network. It is designed to inform partners, educators, and the broader ecological community as well as LTER Network scientists. Please share and encourage your colleagues to subscribe.

News from the NCO, issued quarterly, provides regular organizational updates to LTER-associated personnel.

From related organizations:

 

News from the NCO: 2017 Winter

Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara

January 18, 2017

Synthesis

The review committee recommended two Synthesis Working Group proposals for funding in the current round. Congratulations to Forest Isbell, Jane M. Cowles, and Laura Dee who will lead Scaling-up productivity responses to changes in biodiversity and Lauren Hallett, Daniel Reuman, Katharine Suding for Synthesizing Population and community synchrony to understand drivers of ecological stability across LTER sites

Mark your calendars

The NSF mini-symposium is scheduled for March 21, 2017. The list of speakers is available at lternet.edu. We are still seeking a few posters to complement the featured talks. Please contact Marty Downs if you have a story you think NSF should see.

The annual Executive Board meeting is scheduled for May 16, 2017 at Hubbard Brook LTER. The Science Council meeting will follow on May 17th, 18th, and 19th. The theme is “disturbance” with a focus on the use and value of long-term data. The steering committee includes Frank Davis, Michael Nelson, Gary Lovett and Evelyn Gaiser.

An online, interactive workshop on science communication fundamentals, “Telling the Right Story to the Right People, at the Right Time,” is underway now. If you are interested in being notified directly about future communications trainings and resources, please sign up for the communications interest list.

The NCO has two workshops accepted for ESA 2017 in Portland, OR. Marty will lead a workshop on quick and inexpensive video production. Sam and the education committee will lead a lunch-time workshop on using the Next Generation Science Standards EQuIP rubric to spark collaborative lesson generation between educators and scientists. We’ll let you know when registration is open.

Meetings and Outreach

The annual Life Discovery Conference, which ESA helps organize, highlights leading science, curriculum design, implementation, and data exploration efforts for high school and undergraduate education. Presentations are no longer being accepted, but it’s still a great place to connect with educators and education-focused colleagues.

For the upcoming ASLO Aquatic Sciences meeting, the NCO is summarizing and promoting LTER-related talks and posters, as we have for ESA and AGU in the past. If you haven’t already let us know about your talk or poster, please do.

Abstracts are due soon for presentations at the 2017 Ecological Society of America Meeting in Portland Oregon. The submission deadline is Thursday, February 23 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time. Remember to include LTER in your title or abstract so we can find and promote your talk!

From the Committees

The Information Management Committee has a new training working group, working on identifying unmet training needs and developing new resources. The web site improvement and redesign (WIRED) working group is assessing and refreshing the information managers web site.

The Education and Outreach Committee is working on the application of a new rubric to guide the design of classroom resources. Talk with Sam Norlin or Steven McGee if you’re interested. This summer’s long-distance information share among Research-Experience-for-Teachers participants, organized by Kara Haas and others, offered a sense of community and inspiration for teachers working at LTER sites. Marty Downs and Jill Haukos are working on a redraft of a resource guide for Education and Outreach managers.

The Diversity Committee was established as a standing committee at the 2016 Science Council meeting, tasked with developing diversity-related resources and approaches for use across the Network. Current chair is Alan Berkowitz.

LTER Newsletter Reminder

LTER Science update, issued monthly, provides brief, accessible summaries of recent science from across the Network. It is designed to inform partners, educators, and the broader ecological community as well as Network scientists. Please share and encourage your colleagues to subscribe.

News from the NCO, issued quarterly, provides regular organizational updates to all LTER-associated personnel. If you have news items from your committee that you would like to have included, please drop me a line.

News from the NCO: 2016 Autumn

Santa Barbara shoreline and wharf header

November 2, 2016

Synthesis

The LTER-NCO received nineteen proposals for Synthesis Working Groups in the October call for proposals. The review committee meets in late November and selections will be announced in December.

Meanwhile, the Metacommunities Working Group got started with a bang, hosting a very successful workshop at ESA and their first meeting at the LTER-NCO in September.

Mark your calendars

The NSF mini-symposium is scheduled for March 21, 2017. Keep an eye on the web site for topics and speakers.

The annual Executive Board meeting is scheduled for May 16, 2017 at Hubbard Brook LTER. The Science Council meeting will follow on May 17th, 18th, and 19th.

Communications Trainings

By popular demand, the NCO is hosting a discussion of video abstracts and video shorts on November 17, 2016. Pre-registration is required and background reading is recommended.

Through a collaboration with SciFund Challenge, the NCO is offering an 8 week online, interactive course in science communications fundamentals: Telling the Right Story, for the Right People, at the Right Time. The course will run from January 8-March 4, 2017.

Meetings and Outreach

ILTER: Almost 50 US LTER researchers were among the 300 delegates at ILTER’s first open science meeting,  held October 9-13 in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Meeting highlights included workshops on uncertainty in long-term research, distributed experiments, and visits to the many long-term sites operated by SANParks and SAEON.

AGU Meeting: LTER researchers will present over 100 talks and posters at the American Geophysical Union meeting, December 12-16.  Find a list of LTER-related talks on the LTERNET web site. Did we miss yours? Drop a line to nco-comm@lternet.edu to add it. And next year, be sure to include “LTER” somewhere in your affiliation or abstract!

OBFS Annual Meeting: Matt Jones presented at the Organization of Biological Field Stations Annual Meeting Sept 21-25 in Sitka, Alaska on behalf of the LTER-NCO and the Network. He encountered strong interest in developing collaborative working group proposals.

NCO Personnel Update

The NCO welcomes our new Education Lead, Sam Norlin. He’ll continue as Project Director for  the Raising Educational Achievement through Cultural Heritage (REACH Up) Project at University of Alaska-Fairbanks while devoting 30% of his time to stewarding the LTER Network education effort.

LTER Newsletters

LTER Science update, issued monthly, provides brief, accessible summaries of recent science from across the Network. It is designed to inform partners, educators, and the broader ecological community as well as Network scientists. Please share and encourage your colleagues to subscribe.

News from the NCO, issued quarterly, provides regular organizational updates to LTER-associated personnel.

LTER Mailing List Reference

Quick! Which email lists reaches site administrators and which reaches site PI’s? The NCO has recently updated the major centrally-managed email lists and added this handy reference page to the web site.  

Open Positions

Conferences and Special Issues

LTER is partnering with ESA to get out the word about their annual Life Discovery Conference, which highlights leading science, curriculum design, implementation, and data exploration for high school and undergraduate education. Proposals for short presentations and hands-on workshops are being accepted until December 15, 2016

Science of the Total Environment is planning a special issue on detecting and explaining natural and anthropogenic changes by making use of large extent, long-term ecological research facilities of the international long-term ecosystem research (ILTER) network.

They are particularly interested in regional or global studies. To inquire about contributing a manuscript, email peter.haase@senckenberg.de by December 1, 2016, with: Name of author(s), institute, country, indicative title, abstract.

ESA invites proposals for Workshops, Special Sessions, Field Trips, and Ignite Sessions for the 2017 Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon. The meeting theme is “Linking biodiversity, material cycling and ecosystem services in a changing world.”

News from the NCO: 2016 Summer

stearnswharf-cropped-nco-newsSummer 2016

Dear PIs and Site Managers,

It was great to see so many of you in Santa Barbara for the LTER Science Council meeting. I hope you enjoyed our lovely city and began to get a sense of where the office is heading. I certainly got a much better feeling for the interests and energy of our wide-ranging network.

Within-network communication is a particular challenge for such a distributed organization. The email you are reading is the first of what I expect to be quarterly updates on the progress and plans that are taking shape at the NCO. Much of the enclosed information is available on the lternet web site, but I’ll use this forum to call out the most current and relevant information for your attention, particularly while we work to upgrade the existing web site.

Please feel free to share this information with other site personnel as you see fit. And don’t hesitate to reach out with questions, suggestions, or news.

Cheers,

Marty Downs
LTER Lead Communications Officer
805-893-7549
downs@nceas.ucsb.edu

Synthesis

Three Synthesis Working Groups were selected out of 24 submissions. Congratulations to:

  • Adam Wymore (LUQ) and Sujay Kaushal (BES) — Stream elemental cycling: Global patterns in stream energy and nutrient cycling
  • Eric R. Sokol (MCM), Christopher M. Swan (BES), Nathan I. Wisnoski (AND) — A synthesis to identify how metacommunity dynamics mediate community responses to disturbance across the ecosystems represented in the LTER network
  • Kimberly J. La Pierre (KNZ/CDR/SGS), Meghan L. Avolio (KNZ), Kevin R. Wilcox (KNZ/SGS) — Integrating plant community and ecosystem responses to chronic global change drivers: Toward an explanation of patterns and improved global predictions

A new RFP will be released by the end of July, with a deadline in the first week of October. A few provocative topics emerged from the science council meeting in May and we expect other great ideas to bubble up from ESA and summer fieldwork.

Science Council

The LTER science council had a successful 3-day meeting, May 17-19, 2016. Details of the discussions and presentations are available on the Intranet.

Site Presentations  |  EB discussions  |  Science Council notes

ILTER

The first open science meeting of the international LTER Network (ILTER) will be held October 9-13 in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Twenty-two LTER researchers received funding through the NCO to present their work and cultivate global connections.

NCO Web Site Launched

A new web site lays out the nuts and bolts of who’s who at the NCO and how we intend to operate. We’ve also established a set of generic e-mail addresses for NCO functions:

nco@lternet.edu for general NCO-related questions
nco-comm@lternet.edu for communications-related questions and story ideas
nco-education@lternet.edu for education-related issues and questions
nco-synthesis@lternet.edu for synthesis working group questions
proposals@lternet.edu for proposal submissions and RFP-related questions
nco-training@lternet.edu for the training function at the NCO
nco-travel@lternet.edu  for NCO-related travel arrangements and reimbursements

NCO Personnel Update

NCO Executive Director Frank Davis handed off the NCEAS leadership baton to Ben Halpern on July 1—freeing up time for more research, teaching, and LTER.

At the end of July, we say goodbye to LTER Travel Coordinator Jordan Halland. Sad as we are to see her go, she’s off on a great adventure to travel and teach English in France. The new travel coordinator, Ana Peters, will begin work July 27. After that date, you can reach her at peters@nceas.ucsb.edu or nco-travel@lternet.edu.

Many of you are hearing from our summer fellows. Recent Bren School graduate Terra Alpaugh is working on a variety of LTER projects, including an update of the interactive map. Nicole Poletto is working on education projects, including the RET information-share and improved marketing for the LTER Schoolyard Book Series.

Ecological Society of America Meeting

The NCO and the Environmental Data Initiative (EDI) will be sharing exhibition booth #426 at ESA. Stop by; say hello; tell us what’s happening at your site.

LTER researchers will present almost 150 talks and posters at the Ecological Society of America meeting next month.  Find a list of LTER-related talks on the LTERNET web site. Did we miss yours? Drop a line to alpaugh@nceas.ucsb.edu to add it. And next year, be sure to include “LTER” somewhere in your affiliation or abstract!

LNO-NCO and NIMO-PASTA-EDI Transition

The NCO now houses and operates all of the non-data web sites for lternet.edu, including the main www.lternet.edu web site, as well as additional web servers for managing the personnel and site databases, the image gallery, the Information Management Committee site, the intranet and document archive, newsletter sites (databits, news), sites for the all scientists meetings (asm2015 and others), and various other ancillary sites.

The LTER data portal and NIS is being supported by the PASTA-Plus team at the University of New Mexico. The proposed Network Information Management Office (NIMO) has joined forces with PASTA-Plus and been transformed into a data outreach, curation, and training organization (Environmental Data Initiative  or EDI) that will help address the information management needs of LTER, LTREB, OBFS, and MacroSystems Biology researchers.

Don’t understand who’s handling what aspects of  LTER communications and information management? The truth is, we’re still working some of that out, but we’ll try to keep you updated as we move forward.

LTER Road Trip

Photographer-writer Erika Zambello will be blogging her way around the Network over the next year. Starting with the Southeastern sites, she is visiting all of the LTER sites in the lower 48 states to write, photograph and produce short videos. Her plan is to hit the Northeastern sites in the fall, the Western sites in the winter, and circle back to the Midwest in spring and summer of 2017.

NCO And MCR Team Up To Host Science Council

NCO and MCR Team up to Host Science Council

2016 science council reception

2016 science council reception

The LTER Science Council met May 16-19, 2016 in Santa Barbara, CA at NCEAS, the location ofthe LTER Network Communications Office. Sadly, the “field trip” to the Moorea Coral Reef Site had to be virtual, but attendees had the opportunity to get a taste of the site and research underway there through slide shows, imagery and an in-depth talk by the Moorea site PIs. Participants also got to meet the NCO and NCEAS staff and sample Santa Barbara’s history, culture, and hospitality.

The majority of the meeting was devoted to exploring six synthesis topics, focused on the theme of: spatial and temporal distribution of populations selected to represent trophic structure. Please reach out to the designated leads if you are are interested in learning more about the discussion, joining a working group proposal, or contributing relevant data.

Building International Connections

Building International Connections

ilterThe International LTER Network is holding its first global open science meeting in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Recognizing the value of this event for building international scientific collaboration, inspiring fresh ideas, and expanding the Network’s reach, NSF provided a supplement to help support attendance of some LTER scientists at this landmark meeting.

Interest in the opportunity was extraordinarily high, with more than 60 requests to support travel to the meeting and only 24 slots available. The funding process aimed to prioritize opportunities to build international collaboration, while being inclusive of early career researchers and distributing funds broadly across the network.

The Network Communications Office congratulates the following investigators, who will receive travel support for the ILTER meeting, scheduled for October 9-14, 2016.

  • Christie Bahlai, Research Associate, Michigan State University, and Mozilla Science Fellow, KBS
    Project-based training in reproducible research using population data produced by LTER sites
  • Becky Ball, Assistant Professor, Arizona State University, CAP
    The impacts of urbanization on soil biogeochemistry and biodiversity in the Sonoran Desert
  • Jeff Bowman, Postdoctoral Fellow, PAL
    Methods to assess and monitor marine ecosystem services in the Palmer LTER: A high latitude coastal environment in rapid transition
  • Deron Burkepile, Associate Professor, UC Santa Barbara, MCR
    Impact of nutrient pollution on coral bleaching, coral mortality, and coral recovery in the Moorea Coral Reef LTER
  • Jessica Corman, Postdoctoral Research Associate, NTL
    From whence the carbon: Potential effects of acid rain and climate change on staining in lakes in Wisconsin, USA
  • Marty Downs, Lead Communications Officer, NCO
    Supporting Collaboration with Effective Communication: The USLTER Network Communication Office
  • Michael Duniway, Research Ecologist & Soil Scientist, USGS, JRN
    Soil water, drought, and the heterogeneous vulnerability of dryland ecosystems
  • Michael Gooseff, Associate Professor, University of Colorado, Boulder, MCM
    Long-term response to climate variability in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems
  • Lauren Hallett, Postdoctoral Researcher, NWT
    Spatial heterogeneity buffers species diversity to climate change: Evidence from long-term population dynamics in an alpine grassland
  • Charles Hopkinson, Professor, University of Georgia, GCE
    Sustainability of coastal wetlands in light of climate change, land-use change and sea-level rise
  • Forest Isbell, Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota, CDR
    Biodiversity increases the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate extremes
  • Gary Kofinas, Professor, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, BNZ
    Local and Traditional Knowledge in Long Term Ecological Research: Methods, Integration, and Policy Relevance
  • John Kominoski, Assistant Professor, Florida International University, FCE
    Understanding the biogeochemical consequences of saltwater intrusion among coastal wetlands: linking freshwater availability, nutrient limitation, and carbon storage
  • William McDowell, Professor, University of New Hampshire, US International LTER co-chair, LUQ
    International LTER and CZO networks: Opportunities to build a global understanding of land-water linkages
  • Bonnie McGill, 4th year PhD candidate, Kansas State University, KBS
    Agricultural liming, groundwater irrigation and carbon sequestration
  • Karen McGlathery, Professor, University of Virginia, VCR
    Climate change affects coastal habitat resilience and carbon sequestration
  • Robert Miller, Associate Research Biologist, UC Santa Barbara, SBC
    Responses of biodiversity to fluctuations in foundation species
  • James Morris, Professor, University of South Carolina, PIE
    The Strange Harmonics of Salt Marsh Biogeochemical Cycles in 4D- With a Twist: It’s a Symphony
  • Mark Schildauer, Director of Computing, NCEAS, NCO
    Construction and Use of ECSO: A Formal Vocabulary for Describing and Defining
    Ecosystem Concepts
    The Data Observation Network for Earth, DataONE: a distributed framework for
    preserving and discovering data about earth and environmental observations
  • Gaius Shaver, Senior Scientist, The Ecosystems Canter, ARC
    Carbon balance, leaf traits, and canopy structure in heterogeneous arctic vegetation
  • Christopher Still, Associate Professor, Oregon State University, AND
    Thermal Imaging of Ecosystem Temperatures: Relationships with Biological and Biophysical Drivers and Ecosystem Fluxes
  • Jonathan Thompson, Senior Ecologist, Harvard Forest, HFR
    Land-use scenarios and their impacts on ecosystem services
  • Tiffany Troxler , Research Associate Professor, Florida International University FCE, ILTER Executive Board
    Carbon and water cycles under climate change
  • Robert Waide, Professor, University of New Mexico, LUQ
    Food web dynamics across the LTER network as a model for a broader scale comparative study across a network of international sites
  • Lydia Zeglin, Assistant Professor, Kansa State University, KNZ
    Microbial feedbacks to soil N availability in tallgrass prairie following 30-year burning and fertilization treatments
Search