ecology

Announcing Two Missouri Transect Seed Grant Opportunities

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Missouri EPSCoR is pleased to announce the release of two Requests for Proposals for the Missouri Transect Seed Funding program.  RFPs are in the fields of Data Integration and Ecosystem Modeling.  

Download RFPs and Budget Form:

Data Integration

Ecosystem Modeling

Budget Form
 
The Intent to Submit Form (Data Integration RFP.pdf and Ecosystem Modeling RFP.pdf, pp. 8-10) is due Wednesday, May 17 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  The Full Proposal and Budget Form are due Wednesday, June 21 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  You must send an Intent to Submit form, along with suggested reviewers, in order for your full proposal to be considered.
 
Please send all correspondence to: epscor [at] missouri [dot] edu

RFP Snapshot:

Program Name
The Missouri Transect Seed Funding
 
Source of Funds
The Missouri Transect Seed Funding is part of the Missouri NSF EPSCoR Track-1 Research Infrastructure Improvement program The Missouri Transect: Climate, Plants and Community (IIA-1355406).
 
Purpose
The Missouri Transect is a five-year effort to build infrastructure, knowledge, and collaborations in research and education across Missouri. The Missouri Transect Seed Funding program supports new research and educational initiatives to leverage new opportunities and emerging areas of research. These funds will be directed primarily to investigators and institutions not currently represented on the Missouri Transect team. High risk/high return projects from early career investigators, educators, and collaborative teams will be given preference for funding.  The Strategic Plan for the Missouri Transect can be found at https://missouriepscor.org/about/strategic-plan.
 
Data IntegrationThis RFP seeks to address the questions: What new knowledge can be gleaned by integrating the diverse data sets that are being generated by the scientists involved in the Missouri Transect, and given that opportunity, what are the best approaches to integrate and analyze the data?
 
Ecosystem Modeling This RFP seeks to address the question: Are there mathematical models that can be developed that describe the ecological system of Tucker Prairie and provide a better understanding of the larger ecosystem of a native prairie?   
 
Eligibility
Any individual, independent researcher, or educator at any higher education and research institution in Missouri is eligible to apply.
 
Award Amount and Duration
The total project budget should be a maximum of $50,000 in direct costs over a span of 12 months. A justification of all direct costs is required in the full proposal.  Seed Funds will be available during Year 4 of the Missouri Transect Project, August 1, 2017 – July 31, 2018. 
 
For more information about the Missouri Transect, visit https://missouriepscor.org/

Teacher Workshop Held in Eureka, MO

Thursday, October 1, 2015

     Dr. Troy Sadler, Professor in the MU College of Education and Director of the ReSTEM Institute, and a science education graduate student led several EPSCoR-sponsored teacher professional development workshops this summer.  In Eureka, MO, Sadler held a workshop for the Rockwood School District.  In attendance were about 55 teachers and several school administrators.  The teachers included members of the curriculum writing teams for Rockwood School District.  All of the life science teachers at Eureka High School also attended this workshop.

     The focus of the workshop was to implement issue-based teaching in secondary science classrooms as a means of supporting Next Generation Science Standards-aligned learning.  As part of the workshop program, teachers worked with the ecology learning module that was produced as a part of the Missouri Transect.  Sadler used the learning module to exemplify of how core disciplinary ideas (such as ecological interactions and interdependence) can be taught with scientific practices (such as modeling) in the context of compelling socio-scientific issues (such as climate change).

2015 is the International Year of Soils

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

2015 has been designated the International Year of Soils (IYS) by the UN General Assembly (A/RES/68/232).  The IYS aims to be a platform for raising awareness of the importance of soils for food security and essential eco-system functions. 

The UN has declared 5 pillars of action:

  1. Promote sustainable management of soil resources for soil protection, conservation and sustainable productivity

  2. Encourage investment, technical cooperation, policy, education awareness and extension in soil

  3. Promote targeted soil research and development focusing on identified gaps and priorities and synergies with related productive, environmental and social development actions

  4. Enhance the quantity and quality of soil data and information: data collection (generation), analysis, validation, reporting, monitoring and integration with other disciplines

  5. Harmonization of methods, measurements and indicators for the sustainable management and protection of soil resources   

You can contribute to the International Year of Soils

The Missouri Transect education and outreach participants have developed a “citizen science” project called Missourians Doing Impact Research Together (MO DIRT).  MO DIRT will address the interplay between climate and soil that has an impact on global carbon cycling.  Citizen scientist volunteers will collect and analyze soil samples and record meteorological information in their communities.  The results will be sent to Missouri Transect climate, soil, plant and environmental scientists to enhance real-time data from around the state.

To get involved with MO DIRT or for more information, contact Dr. Terry Woodford-Thomas, tthomas [at] danforthcenter [dot] org" rel="noreferrer">tthomas [at] danforthcenter [dot] org.

World Soil Day Events

To celebrate World Soil Day on December 5 and to launch the International Year of Soils 2015, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) held an event at their headquarters in Rome with invited guests — from scientists to diplomats — from around the world.

World Soil Day was celebrated worldwide this year as seen in the map below:

FAO summarized the significance of soil for human and environmental health:

Soil is the basis for food, feed, fuel and fibre production and for services to ecosystems and human well-being. It is the reservoir for at least a quarter of global biodiversity, and therefore requires the same attention as above-ground biodiversity. Soils play a key role in the supply of clean water and resilience to floods and droughts. The largest store of terrestrial carbon is in the soil so that its preservation may contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation. The maintenance or enhancement of global soil resources is essential if humanity’s need for food, water, and energy security is to be met.

Missouri Transect Seed Grant Proposal Due

Event date(s): Wednesday, June 21, 2017


Missouri EPSCoR is pleased to announce the release of two Requests for Proposals for the Missouri Transect Seed Funding program.  RFPs are in the fields of Data Integration and Ecosystem Modeling.  See the seed funding announcement for more details and to download the RFP materials.
 
The Intent to Submit Form (Data Integration RFP.pdf and Ecosystem Modeling RFP.pdf, pp. 8-10) is due Wednesday, May 17 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  The Full Proposal and Budget Form are due Wednesday, June 21 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  You must send an Intent to Submit form, along with suggested reviewers in order for your full proposal to be considered.

Missouri Transect Seed Grant Intent to Submit Form Due

Event date(s): Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Missouri EPSCoR is pleased to announce the release of two Requests for Proposals for the Missouri Transect Seed Funding program.  RFPs are in the fields of Data Integration and Ecosystem Modeling.  See the seed funding announcement for more details and to download the RFP materials.
 
The Intent to Submit Form (Data Integration RFP.pdf and Ecosystem Modeling RFP.pdf, pp. 8-10) is due Wednesday, May 17 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  The Full Proposal and Budget Form are due Wednesday, June 21 at 5:00 p.m. CST.  You must send an Intent to Submit form, along with suggested reviewers in order for your full proposal to be considered.
 

 

 

Plant and Education Teams: Learning Modules with High School Students in Native Prairies and Woodlands

As a part of the Missouri Transect project, MU biologist Ricardo Holdo is studying how drought impacts tallgrass prairie community dynamics. He has partnered with Troy Sadler and Patricia Friedrichsen, MU science education researchers, to integrate aspects of his studies at Tucker Prairie into teaching and learning materials appropriate for high school students. Sadler and Friedrichsen are working with biology teachers and students from Rock Bridge High School to develop and pilot these materials.  The learning module features climate change as a central issue for the students to explore as they develop an understanding of ecosystem dynamics and ecological relationships.

                                                        

175 high school students along with their honors biology teachers and a team of 18 scientists and science educators—including faculty and graduate students—from the University of Missouri explored Tucker Prairie, one of the last remaining tall grass prairie ecosystems in Missouri.  The students engaged in five activities designed to explore different dimensions of the prairie ecosystem. In the field, students 1) explored the role of fire in maintaining prairie ecosystems, 2) documented encroachment of woody plants into the tall grass community, 3) compared the current landscape with historic records, 4) surveyed insect diversity, and 5) examined soil profiles.

Similar student learning projects will be implemented around the state by Missouri Transect researchers and educators.

Tags: ecology, learning modules, high school education, outreach, Tucker Prairie, Rico Holdo, Troy Sadler, Terry Woodford-Thomas