National Science Foundation: Research Communication Network (NSF-RCN)

Name: National Science Foundation: Research Communication Network (NSF-RCN)
Researchers: Hejda Martin (head of research group)
Jarošík Vojtěch (head of research group)
Pergl Jan (head of research group)
Pyšek Petr (head of research group)
Štajerová Kateřina (head of research group)
Project Type: A - major international projects (at least 3 states)
Realization from: 2006
Realization to: 2010
Summary: Determining the factors that enable introduced species to proliferate and become invasive has emerged as a fundamental challenge to ecologists and evolutionary biologists worldwide. The proposed research coordination network aims to focus a synthetic understanding of biological invasions, particularly with respect to the interplay between biotic resistance, enemy release, adaptive evolution, and hybridization. We seek to develop a predictive framework to better integrate different hypotheses for invasions, and to clarify predictions for those hypotheses. Here, we offer the start of such a framework (Table 1, pg. 15) which the proposed network will critically evaluate and further develop. Species invasions, by their vary nature integrate across a large array of biological processes, that when understood should help to promote our understanding of basic research issues, providing a host of insights to ecology and evolutionary biology. We believe that our synthetic and collaborative efforts among scientists who would not otherwise meet can provide an important catalyst for advances that supersede the field of invasion biology itself. Networking activities include: 1) Annual round tables at which we will further develop the predictive framework, coordinate diverse research projects, and develop teaching materials for high schools, 2) Research exchanges to promote student and postdoc training and link groups working on similar issues 3) Symposia sponsored at scientific meetings 4) Development of a geo-referenced website, and 5) Media liaisons to connect scientistific research with the public.

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