Address of the BSA President-Elect
Haufler, Christopher H. .
A Century of "Botanical Opportunity:" Building on the Past, Providing for the Future.
IN the first presidential address delivered to the Botanical Society of America, William Trelease spoke to the future, and to what he called the "Botanical Opportunity." He promoted both research and education about plants in colleges, botanical gardens, and agriculture experiment stations. He saw the increasing importance of equipment, libraries, and museums. He concluded by calling for greater collaboration among all botanists. Since that initial address, other presidents have presented what I call "reviews," those looking into history, "previews," those looking ahead, and "overviews," those surveying a particular field. As much fun as it would be to provide this captive audience with an "overview" of the marvels of ferns, my address will begin as a "review" and conclude with a "preview" of coming attractions. Recent years have seen the accumulation of literally millions of base sequences from thousands of organisms. This ultimate reductionism must be harnessed and focused. Future Botanical Opportunities lie with integration rather than disintegration, and interpretation through analysis based on a foundation of understanding organismal biology. Botanical education needs to move from plodding surveys of structures and diversity to using plant models for learning principles. There are many "opportunities" for botany to lead by example and bring the focus of research and teaching back to the whole organism as the best platform for integrating biology and educating students.
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1 - University of Kansas, Department Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Haworth Hall, Lawrence, Kansas, 66045-2106, USA
Presentation Type: Special Presentation
Location: Lawn/Kendall Hall
Date: Wednesday, August 2nd, 2006
Time: 8:15 PM