Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group

Welcome to the Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group hosted by the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Guelph!

The Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group is a weekly discussion group that covers topics relating to the biological and environmental sciences. Topics that are explored include (but are not restricted to) eco-evolutionary dynamics, bioinformatics, future biological methods, and eco-physiological responses to climate change.

The aim for the Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group is to foster a creative environment for biological and environmental scientists at the University of Guelph. Through multidisciplinary discussions, scientists can be exposed to topics outside of their specialization and identify commonalities between disciplines to improve their and other scientist’s research. Furthermore, the Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group provides a space for scientists with varying experience levels to collaborate and assist each other.

The format is very flexible. Although multidisciplinary topics are encouraged, any biological and environmental topic is fair game. One person each week is responsible for beginning the discussion in whatever way they choose. This may involve a paper to discuss, presenting tentative research ideas, a set of data in need of analysis, a finished research product, or anything they see fit to open for discussion. In order to maintain a casual atmosphere, presenters are encouraged to use the whiteboard and describe their data and ideas, rather than relying on Powerpoint.

Any interested undergraduates, graduates, postdocs and faculty are welcome to lead and/or join the discussion.

The Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group meets every Wednesday at 12:30pm for an hour in Rm 4440 Summerlee Science Complex.

Why Evelyn Pielou?

Evelyn Pielou espouses the aims of our discussion group; her interests and biological contributions spanned many fields. She started out with a certificate in radio-physics. After earning a Bachelor of Science in Botany, she taught herself mathematical ecology, published articles, and then turned these articles into a PhD, all without an advisor or committee. She worked for the Canadian government in various capacities and then entered academia formally as a professor at several Canadian Universities. She pioneered the use of multivariate statistics in ecology. During retirement, she wrote several popular science books on topics ranging from biogeography to physics.


Fall 2019 Schedule


January 15, 2020 - Post Anthropocene Conservation

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: Watson and Watson


January 22, 2020 - Generic ecosystem patterns from disorder and aggregated properties

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings:


January 29, 2020 - Cooperation versus competition in ecology and evolution

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: ojalehto et al. 2015


February 5, 2020 - Conservation of breeding birds with protected areas

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: 1) Cazalis et al. 2019 2) Peer Community in Ecology reviews 3) Peer Community in


February 12, 2020 - Early Career Researcher Large Collaborative Projects

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: Bodmer et al. 2019


February 19, 2020 - No discussion - Reading Week

Facilitated by

Recommended Readings:


February 26, 2020 - Does soil organic matter equate to increased crop yields?

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: Oldfield et al. 2020


March 4, 2020 - Evolutionary Pathway to Complex Sociality in Birds

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: Downing et al. 2020


March 11, 2020 - Reproducibility and data integrity

Facilitated by Chris Greyson-Gaito

Recommended Readings: Maintaining Trust AND Data Integrity - a forum


March 18, 2020 - TBD

Facilitated by TBD

Recommended Reading:


March 25, 2020 - TBD

Facilitated by TBD

Recommended Reading: TBD


Feedback and More Questions

We ask that after each discussion everyone fill out a quick survey in the link below. This survey also allows you to ask more questions of the facilitator or suggest discussion topics.

https://uoguelph.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_eDuwkvagE8kDim1


Pielou Mailing List Instructions

Do you want to be completely informed about what is happening in the Evelyn Pielou Discussion Group community? Do you want to continue the conversations outside of the weekly meetings? If so, then follow these instructions to join the Pielou mailing list.

If you have any questions about the discussion group, or if you want to facilitate a discussion, please email Chris Greyson-Gaito.

To subscribe

to the list pielou@LISTSERV.UOGUELPH.CA, send an email from your account to pielou-request@LISTSERV.UOGUELPH.CA with the word subscribe on the Subject line.

To unsubscribe

from the list pielou@LISTSERV.UOGUELPH.CA, send an email, from the account which is subscribed, to pielou-request@LISTSERV.UOGUELPH.CA with the word unsubscribe on the Subject line.

To send a message

if you subscribed to the listserv, simply send an email to pielou@LISTSERV.UOGUELPH.CA, we have a substantially smaller mailing list than the departmental list