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Selection: with tag scientific-debate [4 articles] 


Statistical modeling: the two cultures (with comments and a rejoinder by the author)

Statistical Science, Vol. 16, No. 3. (August 2001), pp. 199-231,


There are two cultures in the use of statistical modeling to reach conclusions from data. One assumes that the data are generated by a given stochastic data model. The other uses algorithmic models and treats the data mechanism as unknown. The statistical community has been committed to the almost exclusive use of data models. This commitment has led to irrelevant theory, questionable conclusions, and has kept statisticians from working on a large range of interesting current problems. Algorithmic modeling, both in ...


Fears rise for US climate report as Trump officials take reins

Nature, Vol. 548, No. 7665. (1 August 2017), pp. 15-16,


Officials at the US Environmental Protection Agency are consulting global-warming sceptics as they weigh up a technical review. ...


Fire as an evolutionary pressure shaping plant traits

Trends in Plant Science, Vol. 16, No. 8. (August 2011), pp. 406-411,


Traits, such as resprouting, serotiny and germination by heat and smoke, are adaptive in fire-prone environments. However, plants are not adapted to fire per se but to fire regimes. Species can be threatened when humans alter the regime, often by increasing or decreasing fire frequency. Fire-adaptive traits are potentially the result of different evolutionary pathways. Distinguishing between traits that are adaptations originating in response to fire or exaptations originating in response to other factors might not always be possible. However, fire ...


Little evidence for fire-adapted plant traits in Mediterranean climate regions

Trends in Plant Science, Vol. 16, No. 2. (20 February 2011), pp. 69-76,


As climate change increases vegetation combustibility, humans are impacted by wildfires through loss of lives and property, leading to an increased emphasis on prescribed burning practices to reduce hazards. A key and pervading concept accepted by most environmental managers is that combustible ecosystems have traditionally burnt because plants are fire adapted. In this opinion article, we explore the concept of plant traits adapted to fire in Mediterranean climates. In the light of major threats to biodiversity conservation, we recommend caution in ...

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