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Session topics [Pdf]
 
 
General Sessions (GS)
 
1. Biogeography and macroecology

2. Biological invasions

3. Biotic interactions and ecosystem functioning

4. How Ecology serves the Society: services and nature-based solutions

5. Microbial ecology

6. Other topics
 
 
Thematic Sessions (TS)
 
1. Better together: bridging terrestrial and aquatic biogeochemical cycles

Conveners:
  • Anna Lupon, Centre d’Estudis Avançats de Blanes (CEAB-CSIC), Spain / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet (SLU), Sweden.
  • Núria Catalán, Institut Català de Recerca de l’Aigua, Spain.
  • Sílvia Poblador, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.
  • Ada Pastor, Aarhus Universitet, Denmark.
 
         Terrestrial processes can strongly affect the structure and function of aquatic biomes by determining lateral inputs of energy and nutrients. Watershed topography and land cover, soil processes and erosion, wild fires, tree phenology or riparian forests status are examples of terrestrial features shaping in-stream biogeochemical processes. To fully understand the role of terrestrial systems on the functionality of aquatic ecosystems, an integrative watershed perspective is needed. However, paradoxically, terrestrial and aquatic processes are often studied separately and confined within their ecosystem boundaries, which ultimately neglect interactions among ecosystems and limit our understanding on global biogeochemical cycles. This session offers the opportunity to provide a broad overview of aquatic-terrestrial linkages, integrating a wide array of approaches and perspectives to consolidate common grounds among disciplines. We welcome novel contributions investigating the influence of terrestrial systems on aquatic cycles across biomes, ecosystems, and environments (e.g. pristine, human-influenced). In particular, we are interested in studies exploring the biogeochemical links between terrestrial and aquatic systems across different spatial and temporal scales.
 
 
2. Biodiversity conservation in the face of global change
 
Conveners: 
  • Pedro Abellán, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain.
  • David Sánchez-Fernández, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Spain.
  • Andrés Millán, Universidad de Murcia, Spain.
 
         Ongoing global change is one of the largest threats to biodiversity and to natural systems, with climate change impacts being often synergistic with other change drivers, including invasive species and land use changes. Thus, previous conservation tools and principles must to be revisited to take into account how species and habitats are able to respond to the changing scenario. The aim of this session is to bring together a wide range of ecologists to provide an updated and broad perspective of the current developments in the study of biodiversity responses to global change, where future threats potentially lay and how they may be mitigated or adapted to. Topics covered will include methodologies and approaches to assess and predict biodiversity responses to global environmental changes, the observed and predicted impacts and responses (e.g. species’ geographic shifts, genetic adaptation, phenotypic plasticity, or changes in phenology), as well as the translation of all this information into conservation strategies for biodiversity conservation (e.g. restoration, spatial planning or extinction risk assessment).
 
 
3. Carbon cycling within and across ecosystems: from land to ocean
 
Conveners:
  • Daniel von Schiller, University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), Spain.
  • María Almagro, Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), Spain.
  • Cristina Romera-Castillo, Institute of Marine Sciences (ICM-CSIC), Spain.
  • Rafael Marcé, Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA), Spain.
  • Biel Obrador, University of Barcelona (UB), Spain.
 
         The global carbon cycle connects terrestrial ecosystems, freshwaters and oceans. However, terrestrial ecologists, limnologists and oceanographers often work in isolation. We propose to bridge the divide across these disciplines to better integrate the knowledge on the carbon cycle from different ecosystems into the global carbon cycle. Knowledge sharing and collaboration among different disciplines of ecology will help us to better approach global scientific challenges and environmental issues. In this session, we seek studies that examine carbon cycling (gaseous emissions, decomposition, metabolism, etc.) within all types of ecosystems. We especially look for studies that examine carbon cycling along the land to ocean continuum and/or compare carbon cycling across terrestrial-aquatic and/or freshwater-marine boundaries.

 
4. Diversity and distribution of species in tropical ecosystems
 
Conveners:
  • Manuel J. Macía, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • Luis Cayuela, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain.
 
         A fundamental aim in ecology and biogeography is to understand patterns of species diversity and distribution and the underlying mechanisms that drive them across their habitat ranges at different spatial scales. This is particularly challenging in tropical ecosystems, as they harbor an amazing diversity of plants, animals and microorganisms in terrestrial and aquatic environments. Different processes can explain tropical community assemblages, including deterministic processes such as abiotic and biotic filtering, stochastic processes, and species’ evolutionary history. However, teasing apart the relative importance and significance of any of these three processes in explaining tropical community assemblages, their understanding is still a challenge for ecologists and biogeographers. This session will cover the study of patterns and processes of diversity in tropical ecosystems throughout the world, at the time that it will serve as a meeting forum for tropical research groups.

5. Ecological networks: addressing the complexity of multi-specific interactions
 
Conveners:
  • Pedro Jordano, Estación Biológica de Doñana (EBD-CSIC), Spain.
  • Irene Mendoza, Estación Biológica de Doñana (EBD-CSIC), Spain.
 
         Complex networks of ecological interactions emerge as the natural result of community assembly processes. In recent years, significant advances took place in their description and analysis, unveiling unexpected details about their topology and structure. Yet we are still far from understanding the processes and consequences of network complexity. Quantifying and characterizing this complexity is urgent and demands that a large fraction of these interactions be experimentally or computationally probed. This is challenging and has tremendous interest, as rapid and effective actions for conservation and restoration of human-disturbed ecosystems urgently require the identification of the minimum amount of complexity that has to be restored in order to guarantee ecosystem persistence. This session focuses on what we know about the macroscopic properties of complex ecological interaction networks: the new statistical approaches for the characterization and identification of links, the identification of functional modules and compartments, and the exploration of interaction complementarity and redundancy from a functional viewpoint. Then we aim to identify current challenges for knowledge in the field of network ecology and offer an overview of current approaches.

6. Ecological restoration
 
Conveners:
    • Josep M. Ninot, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.
    • Margarita MenéndezUniversitat de Barcelona, Spain.
 
 
         Given the ancient and yet increasing land use by human activity, an increasing amount of valuable ecosystems are doomed to be restored. A fair number of restoration actions done during the last decades have grown into fair results, concerning geomorphologic shaping, amelioration of some soil and hydrological aspects, and re-creation of basic plant communities –using a few engineering plant species. Such favored plants, moreover, may incorporate to the restoration actions additional functions, such as soil-water depuration, or habitat creation for targeted biota.
         However, in a wide scope of restored areas –from wetlands to forests and to wasted lands– misfunctioning persists in some basic processes. This is the case of altered hydrological dynamics, influential invasive species or generalized pollution, which operate at a much larger scale than that strictly corresponding to the restored areas. In this way, human activity and its legacy, together with climate change, directly affect and drive the functioning, structure and biota of the restored ecosystems.
         This proposed session, within the first SIBECOL meeting, may be an excellent crossroad where ecologically connect landscape structure and function; terrestrial and aquatic subsystems; and theoretical with applied frameworks.
 
7. Evolutionary ecology in terrestrial, aquatic and marine environments
 
Conveners:
  • Xavier Picó, Estación Biológica de Doñana (EBD-CSIC), Spain.
  • Mohamed Abdelaziz,  Universidad de Granada, Spain.
  • Antonio Castilla, Centro de Ecologia Aplicada Prof. Baeta Neves/InBIO, Portugal.
 
         All organisms are subject to evolutionary forces that are critically influenced by the local environment in which individuals complete their life cycles. Understanding how such evolutionary forces modulate the populations at different spatial and temporal scales has been a long-term primary research objective in evolutionary biology. Furthermore, such knowledge will be of paramount importance to fully comprehend the evolutionary response of organisms to the rapid environmental changes experienced worldwide. At present, the interaction among various scientific disciplines, including ecology, genetics, genomics and evolution, provides exciting and challenging opportunities to unravel the complexity of evolution in wild environments as well as the evolutionary implications of global climate change on biodiversity. This session attempts to provide insights into the main conceptual advances in the field of the evolutionary ecology of organisms occurring in terrestrial, aquatic and marine environments, whose comparison will be extremely useful to detect common patterns but also the particularities of each environment. We welcome hypothesis-driven theoretical and empirical contributions on evolutionary ecology, population ecology, and/or population genetics and genomics with no bias regarding taxon, biome or biogeographical area.

 
8. Extreme events ecology
 
Conveners:
  • Julia Chacón Labella, INIA, Spain.
  • Enric Batllori Presas, CREAF; UB, Spain.
  • Cristina García, CIBIO/InBIO, Portugal.
  • Francisco Lloret Maya, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
 
         Extreme ecological events (EEEs) are highly infrequent events with a very large or very low magnitude compared to the historical bounds of systems’ variation that can trigger disproportionate –positive or negative– consequences for any given aquatic or terrestrial ecosystem. From an ecosystem point of view, EEEs can be classified as extrinsic or intrinsic forcings of the structure, composition and functioning of ecosystems. For instance, climate extremes and their physical impacts –extrinsic forcings such as heat waves, floods, extreme drought, mega-fires– are key drivers of ecological dynamics that are forecasted to increase in frequency, magnitude, and duration in the following decades. Similarly, species-dependent drivers of community assembly and dynamics such as long distance dispersal events –intrinsic forcing– may be paramount in determining range shifts, shaping the scale of genetic and demographic spatial patterns, and driving the advance of invasive species under changing environments.
         The session intends to provide a broad, cross-scale perspective of the effects of EEEs and their regime on ecosystems, including terrestrial and aquatic environments, to better understand their impacts in shaping ecological and evolutionary dynamics and the response of ecosystems to ongoing climate change. Results from experiments, targeted field studies, modelling approaches, long-term monitoring programs or sensor networks are welcomed. This session is organized in parallel and complemented by a proposed workshop that will provide the basic knowledge to apply statistics of extremes to ecological data.

 
9. Growth footprints: the challenge of time in plant and animal ecology
 
Conveners:
  • Joaquim Garrabou Vancells, Institut de Ciències del Mar CSIC, Spain.
  • Beatriz Morales Nin, IB-CSIC IMEDEA, Spain.
  • Igor Gutiérrez Zugasti, Instituto Internacional de Investigaciones Prehistóricas de Cantabria (IIIPC), Spain.
  • Gabriel Sangüesa Barreda, iuFOR-Universidad Valladolid, Spain / Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología (IPE-CSIC), Spain.
  • Jesús Julio Camarero, Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología (IPE-CSIC), Spain.
  • Isabel Dorado-Liñán, E.T.S.I. Montes, Forestal y Medio Natural, UPM / Forest Research Centre (INIA-CIFOR), Spain.
  • Mar Génova, Escuela Universitaria de Ingeniería Técnica Forestal, UPM, Spain.
  • Emilia Gutiérrez, University of Barcelona, Spain.
  • Andrea Hevia, University of Huelva, Spain.
  • Raúl Sánchez-Salguero, Univ. Pablo de Olavide, Spain.
 
         The dichotomy between time scale and resolution is a key factor in ecology. If time scales are inappropriate or the temporal resolution is insufficient, the mechanisms and drivers of ecological processes may not be fully understood. Growth records are studied by many scientific disciplines in ecology, and represent a mid- to long-term time perspective after precise dating processes and dictated by species life span. Some of them show a high temporal resolution (from annual to even daily), and an interesting spatial resolution within aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. These strengths have turned these disciplines into a powerful approach to address complex ecological processes, and contextualize environmental change throughout time. The variety of these disciplines, includes: annual-rings formed by perennial plants, horns growth in mountain goats, growth banding in coral skeletons, fish otoliths, or shells in bivalve molluscs, among many others. Despite growth footprints show important methodological resemblances, weaknesses, and future challenges, the different scientists have been uniquely focused on specific taxonomic groups with scarce transdisciplinary feedbacks. This session is an opportunity to break these barriers, and to be a meeting point for those scientists from many different fields united by the use of retrospective growth proxies in plant and animal ecology.

 
10. Linking functional traits and fitness in a changing world
 
Conveners:
  • Jesus Villellas, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.
  • Nuria Pistón Caballero, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
  • María Begoña García, Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología (IPE-CSIC), Spain.
  • Roberto Salguero-Gómez, University of Oxford, UK.
 
         Functional traits and vital rates inform on some of species’ most relevant ecological processes, such as the use of available resources, life history strategies, or responses to the environment. While many trait-based studies implicitly assume a relationship between traits and fitness, we have surprisingly little evidence from empirical data. In addition, a combination of multiple traits can affect fitness simultaneously. In this session, we will showcase cutting-edge researcher analysing the links and trade-offs between functional traits, vital rates, and their effects on fitness. The session will also include studies of patterns and/or correlations in functional and demographic traits in response to agents of global change, such as warming, drought or land use changes. We will accept presentations with either intraspecific (individual- or population-oriented) or interspecific (community-oriented) approaches, and we especially welcome large-scale or integrative studies. We propose to address this timely topic by developing a series of overview talks and closing up with a synthetic framework to integrate plant shape, function and strategies. The topic of the proposed session aligns well with the theme of the SIBECOL 2019 meeting because most ecosystem services and biodiversity at large rely on plant traits, which are at the core of this session.
 
 
11. Marine and terrestrial ecosystem responses to climate change: from genes to populations and ecosystems
 
Conveners:
  • Pol Capdevila Lanzaco, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.
  • Paloma Ruiz-Benito, Universidad de Alcalá (UAH), Spain.
  • Enrique Andivia, Universidad de Alcalá (UAH), Spain.
  • Jaime Madrigal-González, Université de Genève, Switzerland.
  • Cristina Linares Prats, University of Barcelona, Spain.
  • Ester Serrão, CCMAR-CIMAR Centre of Marine Sciences, Universidade do Algarve, Portugal.
  • Núria Marbà, Institud Mediterrani d’Estudis Avançats (IMEDEA, CSIC-UIB), Spain.
  • Quim Garrabou, Institut de Ciències del Mar – CSIC, Spain.
  • Ignasi Montero-Serra, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.
  • Scott Bennett, Institud Mediterrani d’Estudis Avançats (IMEDEA, CSIC-UIB), Spain.
 
         One of the most apparent signals of humans’ impact on the biosphere is climate change, causing alterations in the average climate and, in the intensity and frequency of extreme climatic events such as droughts, storms or heat waves. Evidence of environmental alterations has transgressed almost all levels of organization in biological systems and has extended to a wide range of spatial and temporal scales. Both marine and terrestrial ecosystems play a critical role in the global carbon cycle, in biodiversity maintenance and in the provision of ecosystem services. Changes in climate overlap with human-induced modifications in the structure of ecosystems and their interactive effects can ultimately lead to non-linear responses and tipping points. Understanding those processes that are essential to guarantee the structure and function of ecosystems, as well as the long-term provision of services, has became a key priority in conservation science.          This session welcomes contributions to increase our knowledge and predictions about the responses of species (from individuals to communities), and their underlying mechanisms, to climate change. Attendees will benefit from different study systems, approaches, methodologies and scales for the evaluation of ecosystem responses and the special focus on management strategies aimed at enhancing ecosystem stability and resilience.
 
 
12. New opportunities in ecological studies using new tools and sensors, from satellites to ROVs
 
Convener: 
  • Juan Miguel Soria García, Institut Cavanilles de Biodiversitat i Biologia Evolutiva. Universitat de València, Spain.
 
         Although remote sensing on landscapes has traditionally been limited by the spatial and radiometric resolution of the sensors, its use for the study of the properties and processes of marine, freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems has seen an increase in the last years. This increase in the use of remote sensing has also been observed everywhere, where in recent years several studies have been carried out with low and high resolution sensors, both spatial and radiometric. The European Space Agency (ESA) currently has deployed a new Earth Observation Satellite, the Sentinel-2 (S2). The mission started in 2015 and is composed of two satellites, called S2A and S2B, making it an exceptional tool for intensifying studies on agriculture and forest areas, water bodies and oceans with a spatial resolution (10 m) and a temporary frequency (5 days) unthinkable so far in free and open-access data. Also Remote Operated Vehicles give more detailed information in small areas with new miniature cameras and mobile applications.

 
13. Nutrient cycling in soils and dry riverbeds under increasing dryness - physical and biological drives
 
Conveners:
  • Marisa Arce, Center for Edafology and Apply Biology of Segura (CEBAS-CSIC), Murcia, Spain
  • Clara Mendoza-Lera, BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg Freshwater Conservation Department, Germany.
  • María Almagro, BC3-Basque Centre for Climate Change, Spain.
  • Anna M. Romaní, Institute of Aquatic Ecology, University of Girona, Spain.
  • Rosa Gómez, University of Murcia, Spain.
 
         Expanding drought due to climate change might affect nutrient cycling in dry soils and sediments from dry river beds…, especially in mediterranean, arid and semiarid watersheds. Key biogeochemical processes driving nutrient cycling may be compromised due to increasing dryness (reduction of water availability). However the drivers and constraints and their interactions that end up determining the biogeochemical responses to dryness still remain unclear. Drivers and constraints include physical factors such as irradiance, with its potential effect on organic matter decomposition, and soil/sediment structural parameters (i.e. texture, granulometry, origin, organic matter content) that may interact with the microbial community composition (bacteria, archaea, fungi) and its functional capabilities.
         The objective of this session is to get together soil, plant, and freshwater ecologists working in ecosystems under different dryness (deserts, intermittent freshwaters, mediterranean watersheds…) to decipher the biogeochemical, microbial and physical mechanisms driving responses of nutrient cycling in soils and sediments to increasing dryness. We believe that this necessary link between disciplines will bring relevant key mechanisms and interactions as well as distinct methodological approaches. This will help improve our understanding of the biogeochemical implications of dryness and to anticipate to potential effects of water scarcity on temperate areas.

 
14. Organisms and ecosystem responses to global change in soils and sediments
 
Conveners:
  • Pablo García Palacios, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain.
  • Iván Prieto Aguilar, CEBAS-CSIC, Spain.
 
         Global change ecology has traditionally focused on aboveground organisms. In recent years, we have seen an increased interest to understand how global change impacts on soil/sediment biodiversity translate into altered ecosystem functioning. Soil and sediment organisms play a fundamental role in ecosystem processes, e.g. C, N and P cycling, in terrestrial and aquatic systems, and are highly sensitive to global change. Ecosystem responses to global change are thus largely determined by the interactions between plants, physicochemical factors of soils, water and sediments, and their inhabiting organisms. In this session, we would like to invite communications of studies linking the diversity (taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic) of plant, soil and/or sediment communities, with the responses of C, N and P cycling to global change. We propose that a combination of approaches (large-scale observations, long-term field experiments, short-term incubations, and meta-analysis) is needed to gain mechanistic insights on this topic that can be used to inform the assumptions in Earth system models. We will bring together scientists working at the interface between ecosystem, plant and microbial ecology in terrestrial and aquatic systems, to increase our understanding of relevant topics such as carbon-climate change feedbacks, agricultural intensification, litter decomposition, forest dynamics and functional aspects of biotic interactions. This thematic session is sponsored by the AEET Working Group PlanSoil.

 
15. Palaeoecology: using long-term datasets to test ecological questions
 
Conveners:
  • Encarni Montoya, Institute of Earth Sciences “Jaume Almera” (CSIC), Spain.
  • Sandra Nogué, University of Southampton, UK.
  • César Morales del Molino, Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL / IPS & OCCR, University of Bern, Switzerland.
  • Sergi Pla-Rabés, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
 
         Ecosystems are dynamic entities under continuous change, in response to both internal processes and changes in the external environment. The disparity in the time span of ecological processes and diverse lifespans mean that ecological dynamics play out over a range of spatial and temporal scales, including those well beyond a human lifetime. Ecologists are increasingly aware of the importance of long-term ecological datasets extending over centuries and millennia. This need has been reflected in the last decades by the accumulation of long-term monitoring data, as well as by the global concern about current climate change. Palaeoecology, literally “old ecology”, is the study of the remains of living organisms preserved in sedimentary archives in order to reconstruct and interrogate ecological processes over time scales from decades to millennia and beyond, yet the research community using these techniques is not well integrated in many cases with modern ecological research, to the detriment of both ecology and palaeoecology. To bridge the gap between ecology and palaeoecology we, therefore, propose a session to discuss a wide range of ecological topics that would be enriched by long-term datasets, including broad disciplines such as biogeography, macroecology, community ecology, and evolutionary biology.

 
16. Predicting the response of carbon, nutrient and water cycles to global change: where theory, data and models meet
 
Conveners:
  • Teresa E. Gimeno, Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), Spain.
  • Benjamin D. Stocker, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
  • Aude Valade, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
  • Estela Romero, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
 
         Global environmental change affects the functioning and structure of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. However, fundamental questions regarding underlying mechanisms and future responses remain unresolved and undermine robust predictions under climate change scenarios. Process-based models are commonly used for predicting changes in water, carbon and nutrient fluxes but often rely on theories and hypotheses with limited empirical constraints or purely empirical formulations. The large amount of observational data that have become available in recent years from Earth observations, large field data collections and manipulation experiments open new opportunities. More than ever, solid theoretical foundations and powerful models are needed to make robust predictions with the contribution of this plethora of available data. This session aims at bridging the gap between empirical and theoretical science: using data for testing hypotheses and finding appropriate model formulations to address fundamental questions about the impact of global change on biogemical cycles and the functioning of ecosystems. We welcome contributions covering a wide range of spatial and temporal scales and disciplines, including biogeochemistry, ecophysiology, soil science, ecohydrology, marine and aquatic sciences. We particularly encourage contributions from studies that couple experimental and modelling approaches with a focus on linking theory and data.

 
17. Quantitative Behavioural and Movement Ecology
 
Conveners:
  • Frederic Bartumeus, CEAB; CSIC & CREAF; UAB, Spain.
  • Daniel Campos, UAB, Spain
  • Daniel Sol, CREAF; UAB, Spain.
  • Meritxell Genovart, IMEDEA & CEAB; CSIC, Spain.
 
         Disentangling the behavioral variability, organization, and dynamics of living organisms (from ‘simple’ animals to humans) is fundamental to understand ecological interactions and ecosystem functioning. Despite the centrality of this concept the task of providing quantitative descriptions of such behaviours and untangling the generative mechanisms from the observed patterns, is challenging. Only recently have been developed quantitative frameworks to measure, visualize and analyze ‘big’ (highly-resolved, diverse and fast) behavioural and movement data. The latter comes concomitantly with the accelerating advances in technology to measure behaviour, both in the lab and in the field, but also to boosted statistical modelling. In the recent future, the rise of 'Big behavioural data’ will keep on revolutionizing the field, magnifying the applicability of behavioural data across species and ecosystems, and beyond ecological sciences. In this session, we hope to take the pulse of such a revolution, focusing on the modelling of movement and behavioural variability, at the individual and population level, and their impact in the functioning of ecosystems. We aim to foster a revitalized quantitative look to the field that we think will be instrumental in the next decade of research.

 
18. Ramon Margalef legacy
 
Conveners:
  • Narcís Prat Fornells, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.
 
         In the year of the 100 anniversary of Ramon Margalef birth: which has been its legacy? Margalef has produced hundreds of papers in many relevant fields of the Ecology, like diversity and biodiversity, community and population ecology, environmental issues, plankton taxonomy and ecology, and many others. Margalef was in the 60’s and 70’s a world reference in Ecology together with the Odum’s. In the Latin-Americans countries, many of his students are now professors. Margalef’s legacy in Latino America is comparable to Hutchinson’s legacy in the rest of the world (even he probably Margalef will not agree with this assumption). He holds a long list of prizes and honors. However, his figure seems to disappear from the front of the ecology issues since the 80’s. Which is the actuality of his ideas and work today? Why many people working in Ecology didn’t recognize the importance of Margalef in the introduction of the Shannon formula in ecology? Despite a nearly constant or even increasing number of papers of Margalef being cited every year, why his latest book “Our biosphere” (and many other papers) are absent from books and textbooks in Ecology? We call for presentations that may explain or add information to understand why Margalef has not the same recognition from worldwide ecologist than other classical authors in Ecology. An analysis of his prolife in https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=d3w4mPIAAAAJ&hl=en will be used as introductory lecture.

 
19. The Potential of Biodiversity in Agriculture
 
Conveners:
  • Christian Schöb, ETH Zurich, Switzerland.
  • Rubén Milla, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain.
 
         Several decades of ecological research have demonstrated the benefits of biodiversity for ecosystem functioning, services and stability. Nevertheless, the vast majority of plant production is still based on monoculture cropping, with significant negative impacts on the environment and a failure to meet current demands on increasing yields. Large quantities of chemical input and mechanical interventions are needed to keep the monoculture-cultivated ecosystems functioning and to maintain their services over time. More sustainable ways of plant production are needed and ecology and evolution may hold key answers to the questions of how this could be achieved. In particular, the diversification of cropping systems and the use of biodiversity has been proposed as a promising way for a more sustainable development of agriculture. In this session, we would like to bring together experts in the field of agricultural ecology, the evolution of crops and biodiversity research and provide an update on the current challenges in the study of the potential of biodiversity for agriculture.

 
20. Towards some new perspectives of the causes and consequences of dieback and mortality processes: current knowledge and future challenges
 
Conveners:
  • Luis Matías, Resina Universidad de Jaén, Spain.
  • Raúl Sánchez-Salguero, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Spain.
  • Juan Carlos Linares, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Spain.
 
         The world is getting warmer rapidly, and mortality events are raising over the past 30 years in both terrestrial and marine ecosystems, revealing the high vulnerability of many populations in all biomes, trough growth decline, loss of vigour and, in many cases, death. These episodes can have the potential to rapidly alter ecosystem services, with important implications on the carbon-water balance, communities and population dynamics. Besides the presence of inciting (e.g. heat and drought events) and contributing factors (e.g. opportunistic biotic agents), predisposition of particular species, or populations and individuals of a given species is considered as central for understanding why some organisms survive while others succumb to climatic stress. There is also a gap of knowledge about the role of intraspecific trait variability, that might be caused either by genetic or local environmental differences, on determining key mechanisms leading mortality events, such as the carbon starvation–hydraulic failure model for plants. This session calls to join efforts to improve our understanding on how ecosystems respond to changes in climate and which functional of structural traits make some species more prone to dieback and mortality episodes. Contributions including experimental, observational as well as theoretical studies are welcome for any biomes or scale.

 
21. Understanding the contaminants in a changing world: linking terrestrial and aquatic systems
 
Conveners:
  • Andrea G. Bravo. Institute of Marine Sciences, CSIC, Spain.
  • Sergi Diez, Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research, CSIC, Spain.
  • Juan Carlos Nóvoa, Universidad de Vigo, Spain.
  • Silvia G. Acinas, Institute of Marine Sciences, CSIC, Spain.
  • Victor Matamoros, Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research, CSIC, Spain.
  • Albert Palanques, Institute of Marine Sciences, CSIC, Spain.
  • Luis R. Vieira, CIIMAR - Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, Portugal.
 
         The toxicity and spread of pollutants (heavy metals and emerging pollutants, POPs, microplastics, etc) in the landscape has raised international concerns. Understanding the processes and fate of contaminants at the interface of terrestrial and aquatic systems is a prerequisite for the development of remediation and risk management strategies that result in a decrease of the contaminants in the environment and biota. Moreover, future environmental changes such as increases in temperature, land use, runoff, brownification, and primary production may alter the biogeochemical cycling of the contaminants in both terrestrial and aquatic (i.e. continental and marine) environments. We seek presentations revealing contaminants effects, transformation, attenuation and/or transport across terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems at a range of scales from the individual catchment to continents and oceans. Contributions addressing the role of ecosystem function in pollution remediation (e.g. wetland systems) or assessing the risks of pollutants for human health (e.g. food safety) are also encouraged.
 
 
22. Unveiling the diversity and function of macro- and microorganisms through a molecular lens
 
Conveners:
  • Marta Sebastián, Instituto de Oceanografía y Cambio Global (IOCAG-ULPGC), Spain.
  • Clara Ruiz González, Institut de Ciències del Mar (ICM-CSIC), Spain
  • Isabel Ferrera, Institut de Ciències del Mar (ICM-CSIC), Spain
  • Andrea García-Bravo, Institut de Ciències del Mar (ICM-CSIC), Spain
  • Owen Wangensteen, UiT the Arctic University of Norway, Norway.
 
         Living organisms ranging from the tiniest microbes to plants and animals drive the Earth biogeochemical cycles. Understanding how these diverse communities and their processes vary across environmental gradients or habitats (soils, sediments, waters) is essential to comprehend ecosystem functioning and any potential responses to global change. The development of molecular techniques such as high throughput sequencing technologies or single-cell genomics has made possible new ways of looking at macro- and microorganisms in the environment, providing a tremendous boost to the field of ecology. In this session, we will explore how molecular tools help us to understand ecological processes across temporal and spatial scales. We invite contributions exploring the diversity and function of living communities in a wide range of environments (e.g., terrestrial, aquatic) and describing how molecular tools improve the current understanding of ecology and biogeochemical cycles.