Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Rutgers Journal Club in Evolution, going on its 12th year

Rutgers Evolutionary Biology

Journal Club in Evolution, Spring 2015:
THEME: Speciation at small to large scales

Journal Club in Evolution Spring 2015 will be on SPECIATION,
and include reading of the classics, the experimental, and the natural...

They say there are three things you should never ask a biologist:
 1. What is a species?
 2. What is a population?
 3. What is an individual?

Despite this, we will tackle the first question this coming semester
by reading classic and recent papers on speciation and species concepts
at organismal levels from the potentially earliest, simplest life
(viruses), to unicellular bacteria and eukaryotes, to more complex organisms such as
plants and vertebrates.

We will start with classic papers in species concepts by Ernst Mayr
and others, then go on to experiments and field-studies of speciation
processes.  We will cover the whole breadth of the organismal tree,
from asexual to sexual organisms, and also include hybridization,
polyploidization, colonial organisms, and parasites...

The journal club is now going on its 12th year, and
generally has 10-20 students and faculty attending on a regular basis.
This is both an informal discussion event open to all interested
faculty, postdocs, and students, as well as a graduate class (graduate
course name 'Advanced Evolution', 1 credit; 16:215:550).

If you are interested in joining us for credit, or just to show up
and discuss when you have time, make sure you are subscribed to the
Evolution mailing list at Rutgers, which we use for our announcements.
If you need to sign up for the mailing list, sign up here:
If you want to sign up for credit as a graduate student,
e-mail us for a Special Permission Number so you can register.

The journal club will be scheduled when the most registered graduate
students and others can attend, so we can maximize attendance. So sign
up for credit now or send us an e-mail that you want to attend, and then
we will send out a scheduling Doodle poll in early January after
which the actual day and time will be announced.

With best wishes,
Lena Struwe & Siobain Duffy

Dr. Lena Struwe | Associate Professor & Director, Chrysler Herbarium |
Rutgers University | Dept of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources
| Dept of Plant Biology and Pathology | 237 Foran Hall | 59 Dudley Road |
New Brunswick, NJ 08901 | USA | |
phone (848) 932-6343 (NEW!) | fax (732) 932-9441 |

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Industrial Ecology as a Source of Competitive Advantage

This came in via the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies & the International Society for Industrial Ecology (IE).  The current issue is very timely, and I am particularly interested in this series of papers as a way to asses the progress that has been made in transferring the conceptual tenets of IE to practice.  The Journal of Industrial Ecology can serve as a springboard to push much needed ideas and technologies into the commercial environmental sustainability arena, and the now that the articles are currently available for download (for a period of time), this is a great opportunity for the ISIE to demonstrate the importance of their work. 

I think that IE as a whole has had a difficult time transitioning from lab/theory to practice, as many commercial initiatives that are framed under the IE rubric are oftentimes not exploiting the best available technologies and methodologies (ie, synthetic biology, sensors, advanced analytics, etc).  Hopefully, this issue can help to draw attention these ideas and project to a wider audience.

Industrial ecology has contributed important innovations to the pursuit of sustainability in business. Life cycle assessment and the use of life cycle thinking more broadly, industrial symbiosis and the exchange of resources among neighboring factories, loop-closing, material flow analysis, design for environment are innovations with the potential to reduce environmental impacts and to generate financial benefits for companies. Yet the case that these intriguing approaches actually contribute to corporate competitive advantage has not been made.

In “Industrial Ecology as a Source of Competitive Advantage,” a special feature of the new issue of the Journal of Industrial Ecology, cutting edge research is presented on how, when and why the use of industrial ecology by business can lead to cost savings, enhanced profits and a variety of more intangible business benefits.

Some highlights from the issue include:

• Johnathan DiMuro and colleagues from the Dow Chemical Company use replacement cost methodology and life cycle assessment (LCA) to systematically document the financial and environmental benefits of a constructed wetland at a Union Carbide Corp. plant in Texas.
• Christoph Meinrenken and colleagues from Columbia University and Pepisco present a tool that uses data mining and machine learning to rapidly generate product carbon footprints (PCFs) for PepsiCo and combine them with business key performance indicators on a routine basis in its strategy and business planning.
• Mark Finster and Michael Hernke of the University of Wisconsin develop a typology of strategic benefits related to competitive advantage that are enabled by industrial ecology concepts and methods, drawing on examples from Grohe, Interface, Maersk, Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, and Unilever.
• Samuel Short and colleagues from Cambridge University explore the relationship between industrial ecology and business model innovation through a case study of British Sugar, the UK's largest sugar producer.
• Connie Hensler of Interface tracks the 20-year evolution of Interface's use of LCA as a tool guiding the company toward more-sustainable practices in carpet manufacturing.
• Mona ManYu Yang and colleagues of AU Optonics present a case study of how AU Optronics Corp., a global leader in thin-film-transistor liquid-crystal displays, differentiated itself from its peers and competitors by implementing IE approaches, most notably carbon footprint (CF) management and dematerialization.
• Joo Young Park and Hung-Suck Park present a case study of an industrial symbiosis involving a municipal waste-to-energy incinerator and the Hyosung chemical company in South Korea showing economic and environmental benefits of the project as well as an assessment of the competitive advantages for the participants.
Articles will be freely available online for a limited time at

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Call for Papers: IEEE/GRSS Data fusion in remote sensing

IEEE/GRSS Magazine Special Issue on Data Fusion 

in Remote Sensing

Data fusion is one of the fast moving areas of remote sensing image analysis. Fusing data coming from different sensors, at different resolutions, and of different quality is compulsory to meet the needs of society, which requires end-user products reflecting environmental problems that are naturally spatial, multiscale, evolving in time and observed at a discontinuous frequency.
This special issue will present a series of overview and tutorial-like papers about the latest advances in remote sensing data fusion. The focus of the contributions to the special issue will be on reviewing the current progress, on highlighting the latest trends that have been proposed in the literature to answer the needs of multisensory processing, and on pointing out the strategies to be thought to answer the information deluge which will come with the latest missions launched (or to be launched). Particular attention will be paid to the questions of multiresolution, multisensor, and multitemporal processing, while still covering the problems of missing data reconstruction and data assimilation with physical models. Consistently with the approach and style of the Magazine, the contributors to the special issue will pay strong attention to tuning the discussion level to a correct trade-off between ensuring scientific depth and disseminating to a wide public that would encompass remote sensing scientists, practitioners, and students, and include non-data-fusion specialists.
The topics of interest include (but are not limited to):
  • Multisensor, multimodal, and multiresolution fusion
  • Missing data reconstruction
  • Multimodal interaction
  • Data assimilation
  • Application to urban studies, 3D reconstruction, vegetation modelling, climate change, etc.
  • Valorisation of future missions providing complementary sensors
Guest editors
Dr. Gabriele Moser, University of Genoa, Italy,
Dr. Devis Tuia, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland,

The Call for Papers can be found here:


Monday, September 8, 2014

Rutgers Journal Club in Evolution Fall 2014 schedule

For all Rutgers students, the following post highlights the fall semester schedule for the Journal Club in Evolution.

Hi everybody,

The Journal club in Evolution will continue as usual, once a week. .  We
will meet on**TUESDAYS at 12:35-1:55 PM in 145 ENR(14 College Farm Road).

This week we are starting with a short intro by Lena and Siobain:
Basic geology and paleontology for evolutionary biologists (Lena Struwe)
What is evolvability? (Siobain Duffy)

The topic this year is *The Evolution of Evolvability from the
pre-Cambrian to today*.  For much of the semester we will continue
pairing modern papers with chapters from a popularizing book: *Wonderful
Life by Stephen Jay Gould*. Towards the end of the semester, we will
work solely with papers chosen by students on the topic of the evolution
of evolvability. These papers could discuss any aspect of and any
meaning of evolvability in biological systems: mutational dynamics,
epigenetics, macroevolution, response to climate change, etc. See below
for a more detailed syllabus.

The journal club is now going on its 11th year, and generally has 10-20
people attending on a regular basis. This is both an informal discussion
event open to all interested faculty, postdocs, and students, as well as
a 1-credit graduate class. If you want to sign up for credit as a
graduate student, e-mail us. We suggest you get the book now if you want
to attend on a regular basis.  Any edition is OK.

If you are interested in joining us for credit, or just to show up and
discuss when you have time, make sure you are subscribed to the
Evolution mailing list at Rutgers, which we use for our announcements.
If you need to sign up for the mailing list, sign up
here: Anybody
can sign up for the mailing list to keep up to date on evolutionary
events and information.

With best wishes,
Lena Struwe & Siobain Duffy

The syllabus so far:

Week 1, Sept 9: introduction
Basic geology and paleontology for evolutionary biologists (Lena Struwe)
What is evolvability? (Siobain Duffy)
(NO ASSIGNED READING, Start reading the book!)

Week 2, Sept 16: Wonderful Life, chapter 1: The Iconography of an
tree vs. ladder-thinking; finding and understanding the past
(paleontology, etc.)
Presenter: Ariel Kruger

Week 3, Sept 23: Wonderful Life, chapter 2: A background for the Burgess
Cambrian explosion, before and after; Preservation of living things as
Presenter: Samantha

Week 4, Sept 30: Wonderful Life, chapter 3, first part: Reconstruction
of the Burgess Shale: Toward a New View of Life (skipping the part of
the chapter called "The Burgess Drama")
transformation and evolution of new life forms, key innovations, origin
of major clades
Presenter: Ariel

Week 5, 7 Oct, : Wonderful Life, chapter 3, last part: Reconstruction of
the Burgess Shale: Coda
punctuated equilibrium, extinction and speciation, ecology in
paleontological ecosystems
Presenter: Natalie H

Week 6, Oct 14: Wonderful Life, chapter 4: Walcott's Vision and the
Nature of History
how ladder- and cone-thinking can fool scientists
Presenter: Lauren Frazee

Week 7, Oct 21: Wonderful Life, chapter 5: Possible Worlds: The Power of
"Just History"
alternative histories & mass extinctions
Presenter: Samantha

Week 8, Oct 28:  Contemporary criticism and support for punctuated
equilibrium theory
Readings TBA
Presenter: Natalie Howe

Week 9, Nov 4:  Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Ron

Week 10, 11 Nov:  Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Kelly

Week 11, 18 Nov:  Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Kelly

Week 12, 25 Nov:  Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Hua

Week 13, 2 Dec:  Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Hua

  Week 14, 9 Dec: Evolution of evolvability
Readings TBA
Presenter: Matt Strom

Dr. Lena Struwe | Associate Professor & Director, Chrysler Herbarium | Rutgers University | Dept of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources | Dept of Plant Biology and Pathology | 237 Foran Hall | 59 Dudley Road | New Brunswick, NJ 08901 | USA | | phone (848) 932-6343 (NEW!) | fax (732) 932-9441 |

Monday, August 18, 2014

AeroSpace Ventures tenure track position, CU Boulder

************This is still open************


Posting Information

Posting Title AeroSpace Ventures tenure track position
Campus Boulder
City Boulder, CO
Position Type Faculty
Posting date 11/21/2013
Closing date
Full/Part Time
Background Check Required? Yes
Job Summary
Posting Description The University of Colorado Boulder (CU) invites applicants for a tenure-track faculty position in support of an exciting new initiative called CU AeroSpace Ventures. CU has a well-established reputation as a world leader in space, geosciences, and aerospace engineering. CU AeroSpace Ventures brings together related departments, institutes, and centers along with government labs and industry to create knowledge and develop new technologies to observe, measure and better understand Earth and our space environment. The primary units involved are the Departments of Aerospace Engineering Sciences, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, and Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences along with CU institutes: Laboratory of Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) and Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science (CIRES). The Boulder / Denver area is home to the government labs of NCAR, NOAA, NREL, USGS, and National Solar Observatory (NSO), all in close proximity of campus.
Candidates who specialize in developing engineering solutions for Earth and space science research or who perform scientific research in Earth or space science with an emphasis on instrumentation or aerospace vehicles are of particular interest. We seek applicants from any relevant area of focus who complement existing department and institute strengths while bridging geosciences, space, and aerospace engineering. The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to develop an innovative and robust research program, as well as have the vision and potential for excellence in both classroom teaching and student mentoring.
The position is nominally at the level of Assistant Professor, but more senior ranks may be considered for exceptional candidates with suitable experience. The home department will be determined based on the hired candidate’s research and teaching alignment. Applicants will be expected to pursue multidisciplinary research across departments, college and campus, and to establish interactions with the various geoscience and space-related labs and companies in the Boulder/Denver area and across the nation. Women and underrepresented minorities are especially encouraged to apply. This is a 9-month tenure-track position, rostered in any one of the three departments and jointly with either LASP or CIRES.
A PhD in an appropriate engineering or science field is required at the time of appointment, and post-degree experience is preferred. Teaching experience and familiarity with government funding activities is desirable.
The University of Colorado is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to building a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities and veterans. Alternative formats of this ad can be provided upon request for individuals with disabilities by contacting the ADA Coordinator at: or 303-492-6475.
The University of Colorado conducts background checks for all final applicants.
Review of applications will begin on January 15, 2014, and applications will be accepted until the position is filled. See more at the Jobs at CU web site.
Minimum Qualifications A PhD in an appropriate engineering or science field is required at the time of appointment.
Required Competencies/Knowledge, Skills and abilities
Desired Qualifications
Special instructions to applicants Applications are accepted electronically at Applications must include a cover letter which specifically addresses the job requirements and outlines qualifications, curriculum vitae, statement of research interest, statement of teaching interest, and the names, daytime phone numbers, and email addresses of four professional references.
Job posting contact Patti Gassaway
Job posting contact telephone
Job posting contact email
Job Posting Number F00952
Quicklink for Posting

Monday, August 11, 2014

Environmental Informatics session at AMS 2015


31st Conference on Environmental Information Processing Technologies

Call for Papers
The theme for the 2015 AMS Annual Meeting is “Fulfilling the Vision of Weather, Water, and Climate Information for Every Need, Time, and Place”. People, businesses, and governments depend increasingly on weather, water, and climate information matched to their specific needs. We are converging on a day when such information is integrated into nearly every decision or action people take. This revolution in highly targeted, customized information - delivered when and where it is most useful - will make our lives safer, more productive, and more enjoyable.  The challenge for our community is this: collaborate and innovate to develop – and ultimately deliver – actionable, user-specific weather, water, and climate information across all spatial and temporal scales in support of our nation’s safety, health, and prosperity.  The meeting will explore the many topics required for our community to implement this vision.

Following this theme, the 31st Conference on Environmental Information Processing Technologies (EIPT) is soliciting papers that demonstrate successes and advances in interactive computing tools; technologies and observing systems; data management and communication related to advances in observations, modeling, new technologies and media; cyber infrastructure; and applications that address the ability to provide information to a wide audience at any time, for any purpose.
The theme also allows for exploration of an array of topics including effective strategies for communication; social and policy theory; adaptation; mitigation; intervention; emergency response; and public behavior or perceptions. Further, the timeliness of the topic and its broad accessibility to the scientific, stakeholder and public communities should make it particularly appealing to many segments of our traditional AMS community, as well as nontraditional communities.
Papers addressing issues related to all forms of information processing technologies in the environmental sciences – including research institutions, private sector, government and education – are also being accepted.

Student Award Opportunities
Program Chair(s)
For additional information please contact the program chairperson, Nazila Merati (

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

A couple of interesting job postings in computational atmospheric chemistry & physics

A couple of interesting job postings in computational atmospheric chemistry & physics



Postdoctoral Researcher

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research - Boulder, Colorado

 Postdoctoral Researcher, Tracking Code

  • Job Description

    PLEASE NOTE: This is a new, full-time, one-year term position with possibility of extension. Initial consideration will be given to applications received prior to Tuesday, August 5, 2014. Thereafter, applications will be reviewed on an as-needed basis.

    NCAR - NCAR Earth System Laboratory (NESL)

    Atmospheric Chemistry Division (ACD)

    Relocation benefits not provided.

    If necessary, UCAR/NCAR will sponsor a work visa (e.g., H1B, etc.) to fill this position.

    Basic Function of Job: The Postdoctoral Researcher will work as part of interdisciplinary teams that are working on cookstove intervention experiments in West Africa and China. The Postdoctoral Research will conduct original research and engage in group research using the Weather Research Forecasting Model with Chemistry (WRF-Chem) to investigate the impact of cooking technologies on emissions, chemistry and climate. The Post-Doctoral Researcher will use laboratory and field measurements to develop emissions inventories and scenarios, and use WRF-chem to simulate air quality and climate.

    Duties Include
    Works with team members to develop emission inventories for the study region. Designs and conducts modeling experiments with WRF-chem. Uses in-situ measurements and satellite observations to evaluate the results. Analyzes WRF-Chem data with respect to other observations and in-situ measurements.

    Collaborates with other researchers and team members to analyze modeling and measurement results. Communicates the results of the research through publication in peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, meeting proceedings, presentations at scientific meetings, and contributions to scientific assessments.

    Will work safely in accordance with ACD and NESL procedures, the Employee Safety Handbook and the UCAR Safety Manual. Will report injuries and unsafe conditions to supervisor and the Safety Office

    Education & Experience
  • Ph.D. in physics, atmospheric science or equivalent.
  • Demonstrated record of research and publication.
  • Knowledge, Skills And Abilities
  • Detailed knowledge of fundamental processes controlling atmospheric chemistry and transport.
  • Familiarity with global and regional chemical transport models, so as to be able to run simulations and to customize the model code and inputs for specific studies, along with analyzing the results.
  • Skill in the analysis and interpretation of experimental results.
  • Ability to participate and interact productively in multidisciplinary research.
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively on scientific research.
  • Detailed knowledge of differential and integral equations, numerical and statistical methods and linear algebra.
  • Skills in written and oral communication of research results and presentation of proposals.
  • Skills in UNIX, FORTRAN and IDL.
  • DESIRED (but Not Required)
  • Experience using the WRF-chem model.
  • The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) is anequal opportunity employer. We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, sexual orientation, domestic partner status, disability, or veteran status.

    Job Location
    Boulder, Colorado, United States



    Scientific Programmer

    Harvard University - Cambridge, Massachusetts

    School/Unit: School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
    Department: Atmospheric Sciences Group

    Duties & Responsibilities
    This position is responsible for a variety of assignments within the Atmospheric Chemistry Modeling Group as a member of the GEOS-Chem Support Team. In this role, the incumbent uses the GEOS-Chem global transport model ofatmospheric chemistry and composition, which is used by more than 70 institutions world-wide, to incorporate new scientific and technicalfeatures submitted by the GEOS-Chem user community into the standard source code repository.

    • Benchmarking each successive GEOS-Chemversion with a standard simulation in order to ensure that GEOS-Chem continues to function properly.
    • Writing online documentationthat details recent updates to the GEOS-Chem source code repository. This involves updating the online GEOS-Chem Users' Guide, GEOS-Chemwiki pages, and GEOS-Chem website with information on new features added to the model.
    • Providing help-desk support to over 250GEOS-Chem users worldwide. This often involves responding to questions about running GEOS-Chem simulations, assisting users with debuggingGEOS-Chem code, fulfilling data requests, or providing documentation via the GEOS-Chem website and wiki pages.
    • Assisting Harvardpost-doctoral fellows and graduate students with their research projects. This often involves implementing new scientific features intoGEOS-Chem, conducting GEOS-Chem simulations, or preparing graphical output.
    • Updating the GEOS-Chem Adjoint model to processsatellite data, plane flight data, and surface observations of methane. Also conducts methane simulations using the GEOS-Chem adjoint modeland creates graphical output of the results.
    • Assisting with the refactoring (i.e. major structural renovation) of the GEOS-Chemsource code that will allow the model to become compliant with the Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF).
    NOTE: This is a one yearTerm appointment with the possibility of extension.

    Basic Qualifications
    A Bachelor's degree in atmospheric science is required. In addition, a minimum of two years ofexperience working with a research group is required. Programming experience is also required. Experience with Dreamweaver CS5: ACMGwebsite, GEOS-Chem website and MediaWiki: GEOS-Chem wiki is essential.

    Additional Qualifications
    An advanced degree is preferred. Excellent written and interpersonal communication skillsare also necessary to provide help-desk support to worldwide users over 250 users.

    Additional Information
    OTE: Applicants must include a cover letter and a resume to be considered for this position.Please include the cover and resume in one document.

    We regret that SEAS does not provide Visa sponsorship.

    The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) serves as the connecter and integrator of Harvard's teaching and research efforts inengineering, applied sciences, and technology. Our core tenets are - educating broad-minded students; interdisciplinary research;integration across disciplines; and balancing theory, experimentation and practice to create an unmatched environment for learning andexploration. Through collaboration with researchers from all parts of Harvard, other universities, and industry, we bring discovery andinnovation directly to bear on improving human life and society. For more information about us, please visit


    Thursday, July 10, 2014

    Carbon Pricing webinar, from the MIT Climate CoLab

    Announcement from the MIT Climate CoLab:

    Webinar with former US Secretary of State George Shultz and former Congressmen Bob Inglis and Phil Sharp

    Join us tomorrow for an informational webinar on how a national carbon price can be implemented in the United States, hosted by the Advisors of the U.S. Carbon Price contest: former US Secretary of State George Shultz and former Congressmen Bob Inglis and Phil Sharp.
    They will discuss major political challenges facing carbon pricing in the US and the strengths and weaknesses of various policy approaches.  Attendees can ask questions on the topics discussed and about the carbon price contest.
    Friday, July 11, 2014, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM EDT
    - George P. Shultz, former U.S. Secretary of State
    - Bob Inglis, former U.S. Representative (R-SC) and current Director of the Energy and Enterprise Initiative
    - Phil Sharp, former U.S. Representative (D-IN) and current President of Resources for the Future

    The webinar is free and open to the public, and provides an exciting opportunity for contest participants and others considering submitting a proposal by the July 20th deadline, to ask questions and get feedback from advisors who will also be serving as judges.

    The webinar will cover several prominent issues in the news on carbon pricing in the US, including:

    • Discussion of the Clean Air Act regulations on carbon pollution that the Obama Administration released in early June.

    • Perspectives on the Supreme Court ruling in late June, which struck down the Tailoring rule, yet reaffirmed the EPA’s mandate to regulate carbon under the Clean Air Act.

    • Thoughts on the major political challenges facing carbon pricing in the US, and the strengths and weaknesses of various policy approaches.

    • Open Q&A with Advisors from webinar participants on the topics discussed and the contest.  
     go here to register