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Catherine Crawley 08-03-2016 07:37 PM

Call for Applications: Next Generation Genetic Monitoring, a NIMBioSInvestigative Workshop
The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis
(NIMBioS) is now accepting applications for its Investigative Workshop,
"Next Generation Genetic Monitoring,"to be held Nov.7-9, 2016, at NIMBioS.

*Objectives: *Genetic variation underlies key ecological processes and
economic activities, and is thus a collective resource for sustaining
future species, ecosystems and human society. As biodiversity loss
accelerates and environmental challenges mount, there is need for
quantitative evaluation of the status and trends of genetic
biodiversity. However, appropriate mathematical tools for this
evaluation are lacking. Despite major recent advances in obtaining
genetic data, current genetic metrics are piecemeal, may be incomparable
across studies and data types, and are often collected and presented in
an ad hoc manner.

There is urgent need to conceive and develop standard, summary-level
genetic indices that are robust, easily interpretable and tractable
across diverse datasets. In this workshop we will develop a framework
for constructing these mathematical tools. Specifically, we will:
identify key attributes of successful indices in biodiversity science,
survey and critique existing genetic metrics, and identify potential
statistical approaches suitable for summarizing the highly dimensional
nature of genetic data. We hope the workshop will inspire several
synthesis papers, new collaborations, and research funding proposals for
developing, evaluating and distributing new genetic indices.

The inherent challenges of our aims require integration of mathematical
and computational approaches with ecology, genetics, and biodiversity
science. Our workshop will help unlock the conservation potential of
genomics research, and ensure that genetic and non-genetic factors are
considered in quantitative fashion when evaluating and managing wild and
cultivated species. More broadly, we will lay a foundation for
developing new theory and approaches for describing, quantifying, and
interpreting the complex, multidimensional information contained in
biodiversity datasets.

*Location: *NIMBioS at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

*Co-Organizers: *Sean Hoban (Morton Arboretum, Lisle, IL); Michael W.
Bruford (Biosciences, Cardiff Univ., Wales, UK); Louis Bernatchez
(Biology, Univ. Laval, Canada); and Erin Landguth (Computational Ecology
Laboratory, Univ. of Montana)

For more information about the workshop and a link to the online
application form, go to

Participation in NIMBioS workshops is by application only. Individuals
with a strong interest in the topic are encouraged to apply, and
successful applicants will be notified within two weeks after the
application deadline. If needed, financial support for travel, meals,
and lodging is available for workshop attendees.

*Application deadline:* July 24, 2016

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis
(NIMBioS) ( brings together researchers from
around the world to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries to
investigate solutions to basic and applied problems in the life
sciences. NIMBioS is sponsored by the National Science Foundation, with
additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


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