David C. Coleman, Distinguished Research Professor emeritus in the Odum School of Ecology, has written a new textbook. Big Ecology: The Emergence of Ecosystem Science provides a personal overview of the history and development of the science of ecosystem ecology.
Coleman has been part of the evolution of ecosystem ecology since the 1960s, when he came to UGA as an assistant professor and research associate.
Coleman narrates the development of ecosystem science from 1957 through the present, describing the major research institutions and programs created along the way as well as the science’s pioneering figures.
The final chapter of Big Ecology focuses on the future: the International Geosphere- Biosphere Program, the National Ecological Observatory Network and Global Change studies.
“This is an ecosystem textbook that covers the high points and the major personalities of the development of the science,” Coleman said. “I’ve tried to convey the immediacy and excitement of doing ecosystem work, not just in the early days but also today. I hope the message comes across that the glorious days of ecosystem ecology are not all in the past.”