Christopher X J. Jensen
Associate Professor, Pratt Institute

ESA 2009 Day #3 (Tuesday) – “Big Models” Special Session

Posted 05 Aug 2009 / 0

During Tuesday evening of ESA’s meeting I attended a really great special session entitled “Big Models in Ecology: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly Are All Possible Outcomes”. Organized by Vince Gutschick, the session began with a series of overviews by Gutschick, Lou Gross, Lara Prihodko, and Matthew Potts. It then opened up for a Read More

A Major Post, Computing, Conferences, Ecological Modeling, Ecological Society of America, Individual-based Models, Mathematics, Talks & Seminars

ESA 2009 Day #3 (Tuesday): Afternoon sessions

Posted 05 Aug 2009 / 0

At lunchtime I attended a workshop dedicated to helping participants to integrate environmental justice content into ecology courses. The workshop started off with an introduction by Leanne Jablonski. She discussed the absence of ecologists (and therefore the science of ecology) in the environmental justice movement and the need to connect ecologists to communities suffering from Read More

A Major Post, Allometries, Conferences, Ecological Society of America, Environmental Justice, Human Evolution, Macroecology, Talks & Seminars

ESA 2009 Day #3 (Tuesday) – Mutualistic Networks Symposium

Posted 05 Aug 2009 / 0

I spent Tuesday morning in a really well-organized symposium entitled “Mutualistic Networks”. Headed up by Jordi Bascompte, the collected talks focused on the network architecture of mutualistic interactions, mostly among plants and their various insect pollinators. I came in with only a very basic understanding of matrix-based interaction networks, but Bascompte’s introduction to the session Read More

A Major Post, Competition, Conferences, Ecological Society of America, Interactions, Mutualism, Mutualistic Networks, Parasitism, Pollination, Predation, System Stability, Talks & Seminars

ESA 2009 Meeting Day #2 (Monday)

Posted 04 Aug 2009 / 1

Sunny Power started off the first full day of ESA’s meeting with a great overview of where the society has been and where it is headed. My impression has been that ESA has been slowly asserting its rightful place as not only a source of scientific information relevant to policy but also an active commentator Read More

A Major Post, Conferences, Ecological Society of America, Ecology Education, Public Policy, Senescence, Sustainability, Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Urban Ecology

ESA 2009 Day #1 (Sunday)

Posted 03 Aug 2009 / 0

Today I arrive in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I am here to attend the Ecological Society of America’s annual meeting and give a talk entitled “Virtual Prairie Dogs Weigh in on the Resource Dispersion Hypothesis”. I have never been to Albuquerque and when I mapped the various locations where I will be during the conference I Read More

A Major Post, Conferences, Ecological Society of America, Freshwater Ecosystems, Talks & Seminars, Water Supply

Changing and not changing the way we use our agricultural land

Posted 03 Jun 2009 / 0

A few years ago when I was still a graduate student in Stony Brook University’s Department of Ecology and Evolution, a group of us formed a reading group with the ambitious moniker “Social Policy and Global Progress”. Our ambitions in forming the group were clear: we wanted to ground our understanding of ecology and evolution Read More

A Major Post, Climate Change, Ecology, Food, Hunger, Public Policy, Sustainability, Vegetarianism

Quantitative Sustainability and the practice of Life Cycle Analysis

Posted 01 Jun 2009 / 1

Pratt Institute, where my primary duties are to teach students about ecology and evolution, is undergoing a green revolution. In many ways this is not all that remarkable: many campuses are “greening” themselves and at least pitching the idea that they are becoming more sustainable. At Pratt, there’s something slightly different going on: we aren’t Read More

A Major Post, Center for Sustainable Design Studies, Greenwashing, Life Cycle Analysis, Pratt Institute, Quantitative Analysis, Sustainability

Patternicity and that jerk on the cell phone

Posted 22 May 2009 / 0

I was recently taking the Amtrak down from Vermont to New York City when I noticed an interesting contrast, pointed out to me by a chatty fellow passenger. I generally favor trains over planes when it comes to travel: trains have a drastically smaller carbon footprint, are more reliable, and allow more legroom. But one Read More

A Major Post, Consciousness, Evolution, Evolutionary Psychology, Human Evolution, Psychological Adaptation

Human Adaptation and Happiness

Posted 18 May 2009 / 0

I just finished reading a fascinating article in The Atlantic entitled “What Makes Us Happy?”. Although I am not all that well-read or at all trained in human behavioral science, I am increasingly interested by it, and this article by Joshua Wolf Shenk does an amazing job covering a lot of ground. In the past Read More

A Major Post, Adaptation, Altruism, Data Limitation, Ecology, Evolutionary Psychology, Happiness, Human Evolution, Long Term Ecological Research, Psychological Adaptation

Common Ground Symposium at Columbia University

Posted 13 May 2009 / 0

On May 3rd and 4th I attended and participated in a public symposium at Columbia University entitled “Science and Religion in Dialogue for a Sustainable Future”. The symposium, co-sponsored by Columbia’s Center for the Study of Science and Religion and The Fetzer Institute, was part of the Common Ground symposium series. Jeffrey Sachs, who writes Read More

A Major Post, Cooperation, Environmental Justice, Religion, Sustainability