Recognition of Achievement for a Research Paper

Recognition of Achievement for a Research Paper is an award presented to the corresponding author of the most highly cited paper in the BES journals for the past 5 years. The British Ecological Society has an international reputation for publishing high-quality ecological research. Annually it publishes many papers that go on to be highly cited in the scientific literature and this award has been introduced to acknowledge authors whose papers have been particularly well cited.

Functional Ecology

    Awarded to Dr Michael Kearney in 2014 for his paper
   "Integrating biophysical models and evolutionary theory to predict
    climatic impacts on species' ranges: the dengue
    mosquito Aedes aegypti in Australia
    Co-authored with Warren Porter, Craig Williams,
    Scott Ritchie and Ary Hoffmann
    (Functional Ecology, 23: 528–538).

The study described in this paper by Dr Kearney and colleagues demonstrates how biophysical models of climate–animal interactions can be applied to make decisions about managing biotic responses to climate change. Mechanistic models of the kind applied in this study can provide more robust and general predictions than correlative analyses. They can also explicitly incorporate evolutionary responses, the outcomes of which may significantly alter management decisions.

Michael Kearney is a physiological ecologist, Senior Lecturer and Australian Research Fellow in the Zoology Department at The University of Melbourne.  His research is focused on ways to connect what we can measure about an animal’s basic survival skills and capabilities (e.g. temperature tolerances, water loss rates, energetics, microhabitat requirements, nutrition) with what we can measure about their environments and how they change though space and time (maps of temperature, rainfall, terrain, habitat features and so on). From a theoretical and conceptual point of view, this has led Dr Kearney to work in the fields of microclimate modelling, biophysical ecology and metabolic theory.


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