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Abstract Detail

At the Intersection of Applied and Academic Botany: Fertile Ground for an Interdisciplinary Botanical Renaissance

Kuebbing, Sara [1].

Achieving Global Plant Conservation Goals Requires an Interdisciplinary Renaissance.

Without plants, there is no life. In 2012, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) initiated five ambitious objectives to address the challenges posed by threats to plant diversity. These threats include global climate change, invasion of ecosystems by nonnative species, and lack of public engagement and appreciation of the importance of plants to our livelihoods. Partnerships between applied and academic botanists are necessary to meet these objectives, and are an obvious way to generate valuable, creative, and practical research that could provide solutions to threats to plant diversity.
In this talk, I will discuss the unique strengths of applied and academic institutions for botanical conservation research. I will then present three current collaborative research and outreach projects that demonstrate how applied and academic botanical partnerships can contribute to CBD objectives. First, in conjunction with botanists at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, we are exploring how climate change is affecting native and nonnative plant phenology in our region. This partnership unites museum taxonomists and extensive herbarium collections with student researchers and greenhouse and growth chamber facilities to more effectively address this question. Second, in collaboration with applied ecologists with The Nature Conservancy, we are exploring when invasive plant management leads to restoration of a native plant community or reinvasion of the site by another nonnative plant. This partnership joins active land management programs with resources to perform soil analysis and long-term monitoring of restoration sites to comprehensively link management and monitoring practices. Finally, in collaboration with academic and applied botanists across the US, we are growing public education and awareness of the importance of plant diversity in everyday lives through the cultivation of the Plant Love Storiesonline platform ( This partnership connects academic, applied and amateur botanists to build public appreciation of plants.

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Related Links:
Plant Love Stories
Kuebbing Lab Webpage

1 - University of Pittsburgh, Biological Sciences, 4249 Fifth Avenue, Clapp Hall, Pittsburgh, PA, 15260, USA

climate change
invasive plants
science communication.

Presentation Type: Symposium Presentation
Session: SYM5, At the intersection of applied and academic botany: Fertile ground for an interdisciplinary botanical renaissance
Location: San Ignacio/Starr Pass
Date: Wednesday, July 31st, 2019
Time: 10:15 AM
Number: SYM5006
Abstract ID:352
Candidate for Awards:None

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