GRASSROOTS MULTIDISCIPLINARY AND INTEGRATIVE RESEARCH ON THE GLOBAL DIVERSITY OF THE GRASSES (POACEAE) PART I
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Proposed Symposium Title: GRASSROOTS MULTIDISCIPLINARY AND INTEGRATIVE RESEARCH ON THE GLOBAL DIVERSITY OF THE GRASSES (POACEAE) PART I
Abstract: The family Poaceae, informally known as the grasses, have the greatest significance for mankind as humanity came to be in savanna ecosystems, cereal crops and most livestock forages are members of the Poaceae, while grassy ecosystems occupy more than a quarter of dry land with grasses driving grassland, savanna, and rangeland ecosystem dynamics and climate change response. It is not surprising that grasses are known better than any other family of plants. Existing knowledge of grasses ranges from herbarium collections and species checklists all the way through to pangenomes. Building and refining our knowledge of grass diversity continues to be fundamental to a broad range of issues. In Europe, the USA, and China the study of grass diversity and evolution now uses whole genome datasets, while in the most biodiverse countries methodology remains limited by the technology available. This symposium aims to bring together taxonomy and systematics in the family Poaceae carried out anywhere in the world, whether or not it relies on genomic datasets. We will focus on exchanging our experiences of excellent diversity science to underpin the studies of evolution, ecology, and the building of climate resilient conservation and food systems. We aim to build connections and mutual understanding, and especially, between researchers looking at wild grass species diversity in temperate and tropical systems, based in rich and poor countries. New interdisciplinary connections to facilitate more integrative and more international work are a priority. Speakers and projects from diversity rich countries directly connecting Poaceae diversity studies to in-country communities of researchers, and to other disciplines, are particularly encouraged.
Speaker 1: Updating the classification of the grasses (Poaceae) and a family wide biogeographical analysis
Robert Soreng, Department of Botany, US National Herbarium (US), National Museum of Natural History, NHB MRC-166, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, USA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Speaker 2: Classifying the grasses (Poaceae) of Madagascar
Nantenaina H. Rakotomalala, Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre, Ambodivoanjo, Antananarivo 101, Madagascar, email@example.com
Speaker 3: Grass diversity in Brazil and the Flora of Brazil project
Cassiano A. Dorneles Welker, Universidade Federal de Uberlândia, Instituto de Biologia, Uberlândia, MG, Brazil, firstname.lastname@example.org
Topics (Up to three): Systematics
Topic 2: Phylogenetics and Phylogenomics
Topic 3: Crops and Wild Relatives
Justification: This symposium addresses a family of great importance with a focus on building multi-disciplinary research connections. We will cover three of the listed topics: Crops and Wild Relatives, Phylogenetics and Phylogenomic, and Systematics and taxonomy, with the last one as the core subject area. The three speakers (two men and one woman) listed come from three different continents and their countries of origin include Madagascar, the world’s poorest country not currently at war. Nantenaina has been awarded an MSc but has not yet started a PhD program; Cassiano is early career faculty, while Rob is a retirement age researcher.