Minisymposium at the International Conference on Approximation Methods and Numerical Modelling in Environment and Natural Resources

Intermediate Models for Quantifying Ecosystem Population Dynamics, Variability and Uncertainty

Minisymposium at MAMERN VI, June 1-5, Pau, France

Models for ecosystem dynamics face the challenge that ecosystem processes are inherently stochastic, complex, and, very often, modestly understood. Simplistic models often fail to replicate the scale of variability observed in field data because they are based on simplifying assumptions, and inadequate description of the sub-ecological (or sub-biological) processes. On the other hand, complex models are often faced with the challenge that there is inadequate data to determine all parameters characterizing the model. Irrespective of the degree of complexity, models have to rely on data from different observation (temporal and/or spatial) scales. The observations may be characterized by varying degrees of uncertainty, and the information content of independent datasets may not complement each other.

The aim of this minisymposium is to investigate the use of intermediately complex models in quantifying ecosystem population dynamics. This class of models offer a trade-off between parsimonious description of complex ecological processes, and accuracy in replicating ecosystem observations. The minisymposium will focus on

four principal issues:

• The ability of intermediate models to replicate the scale of variability observed in population dynamicsacross several ecosystems

• How different (and possibly non-complementary) data sources and uncertainty levels can be combined toinform the population dynamics

• Whether it is possible to separate inherent ecosystem stochasticity from observation data uncertainty, whenquantifying population dynamic trajectories

• Tracking how data and model uncertainties propagate through the modeling processes, and what effect thismight have on the parameters characterizing population dynamics.

Organizer: Sam Subbey (IMR/UiB, Bergen, Norway)


The minisymposium will be limited to 8 invited speakers. Papers from the conference (and minisymposium) will be published (after review) in the Mathematic and Computers in Simulation journal. Send Sam a talk title and abstract for consideration, as soon as possible. Please not that Sam can only confirm a slot at the minisymposium after he has considered all submitted abstracts.

Published Dec. 16, 2014 2:53 PM - Last modified Dec. 16, 2014 2:53 PM