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ISMC News July 10 2023

Announcements + Featured Paper + Featured Soil Modeller
1. Announcements 
Program for the ISMC international conference May 6th to 11th 2024 at Tianjin University China now available
The 4th international ISMC conference will be held the first week of  (6th to 11th)  May 2024 at Tianjin University China. The program information can be found here and registration will be opened soon.
How to collaborate: running unfunded working groups to get research done
Do you have an amazing idea for a collaborative project? Interested in how to run more effective interdisciplinary collaborations? You aren’t alone! We are scheduling the first “How to collaborate: running unfunded working groups to get research done” hosted by the International Soil Modeling Consortium and facilitated by Kathe Todd-Brown (University of Florida). If you are interested please by filling out this google form 
Nomination for ISMC awards now open
Nomination for the Rien van Genuchten Award for advanced modeling of soil processes, the ISMC Early Career Award and the ISMC publication award 2024 is now open. Nominations are directed to the ISMC coordination office for registration until 01th October 2023.
The biennial Rien van Genuchten Award is issued for outstanding contributions to the understanding of flow and transport processes in soils. It is dedicated to recognizing outstanding scientific achievements made by well-established researchers in the field of soil and vadose zone sciences.
The ISMC Early Career Award is issued biennial for outstanding scientific achievements made by early career researchers in the field of soil and vadose zone sciences.
The ISMC Publication Award is issued to honor an outstanding paper that will likely make a significant impact in soil systems modeling, consistent with the mission of ISMC.
ISMC related AGU Session 2024
Session H034: Challenges and Opportunities in Representing Soil Processes in Earth System Models
Conveners: Yijian Zeng, Katherine E Todd-Brown, Jingyi Huang, Alexandre A. Renchon, Salini Sasidharan
Soil is vital in regulating the water, energy, and biogeochemical cycles.  However, there are challenges in representing soil information and processes in Earth System Models (ESMs) due to the limitation/uncertainty in soil data, the high nonlinearity, and multi-scale heterogeneity issues arising from field/lab-observed soil processes to relatively coarse ESM grid. Unravelling the specific role of soil processes is crucial for evaluating the impact of climate change and adaptation strategies. The International Soil Modelling Consortium (ISMC) and Global Energy and Water Exchanges Program (GEWEX) has launched the SoilWat initiative to identify the most pressing challenges in representing soil and subsurface processes in climate models. In this session, we aim to bring together modelers from diverse backgrounds, such as critical zone and hydrology, soil biogeochemical cycle, terrestrial ecosystem, geophysics, climate, and ESM modelers, to discuss approaches, challenges, and unresolved issues in representing and parameterizing soil processes in ESMs.
Please consider submitting your contributions here. Submission deadline is 2 August 2023.
Session B037:  From Traits to Predictions: Novel Approaches to Understand and Distill the Complexity of Earth's Microbiomes.
Conveners: Eoin Brodie, Gianna Marschmann, Luciana Chavez Rodriguez, Steven D Allison, Hannah Holland-Moritz
Microbes are extremely diverse and critical regulators of global biogeochemical cycles. New technologies continue to reveal the complexity of microbiomes inhabiting Earth's critical zones, oceans, and atmosphere. However, the synthesis of this information into generalizable theory, and its application to improve models of microbial feedbacks to Earth system processes is an ongoing challenge. Trait-based approaches offer a powerful theory-guided framework to distill the complexity of Earth's microbiomes and predict microbial assembly and functioning across environmental gradients. This session invites abstracts on novel approaches to predict, discover or infer microbial traits key to Earth's biogeochemical cycles, as well as new methods to tractably incorporate this information into numerical models. We welcome submissions from any field. 
Please consider submitting your contributions here. Submission deadline is 2 August 2023.
Session B042: Illuminating Genes-to-Ecosystems-to-Genes Feedbacks in Model Ecosystems 
Conveners: Zhen Li, Virginia Rich, Ruth K Varner, Sarah Bagby,
An increasing number of model ecosystems have accumulated long-term biogeochemical and multi-omic data, providing a new opportunity for characterizing genes-to-ecosystems and ecosystems-to-genes feedbacks. This session will examine how teams across diverse habitats have unveiled such feedback mechanisms in their systems, through interdisciplinary unions of field and experimental observations, theory, and modeling. Ecosystems undergoing rapid change, both anthropogenic and natural, will be included, to help participants identify commonalities and differences based on characteristics of habitat and disturbance. Specific examples are thawing permafrost peatland where climate change is altering biotic feedbacks and the global warming footprint, temperate wetlands impacted by increasing nutrient inputs due to land use change, disturbed ecosystems that responses to abrupt change like fire and flood, and marine environments adapting to more acidic and warmer waters.
Please consider submitting your contributions here. Submission deadline is 2 August 2023.
We wish you all already a relaxed summer period ahead! 
ISMC newsletter will also have a summer break and come back in September. If you have any news want to share with us in between, please feel free to still send them to 
2. Featured Paper
Do you want your paper featured?
Please share your recent paper if you want to be featured in the ISMC newsletter. With your contributions, we will select one paper to be featured in every newsletter. Submission can be done here.
Making Waves: Modeling bioturbation in soils – are we burrowing in the right direction?
The burrowing, feeding and foraging activities of terrestrial and benthic organisms induce displacements of soil and sediment materials, leading to a profound mixing of these media. Such particle movements, called “sediment reworking” in aquatic environments and “bioturbation” in soils, have been thoroughly studied and modeled in sediments, where they affect organic matter mineralization and contaminant fluxes. In comparison, studies characterizing the translocation, by soil burrowers, of mineral particles, organic matter and adsorbed contaminants are paradoxically fewer. Nevertheless, models borrowed from aquatic ecology are used to predict the impact of bioturbation on organic matter turnover and contaminant transport in the soil. 
However, these models are based on hypotheses that have not been tested with adequate observations in soils, and may not necessarily reflect the actual impact of soil burrowers on particle translocation. This paper aims to (i) highlight the possible shortcomings linked to the current use of sediment reworking models for soils, (ii) identify how recent progresses in aquatic ecology could help to circumvent these limitations, and (iii) propose key steps to ensure that soil bioturbation models are built on solid foundations: more accurate models of organic matter turnover, soil evolution and contaminant transport in the soil are at stake.
3. Featured Soil Modeller
Featured Soil Modeller (Vilim Filipović)
Improving Agricultural (Environmental) Management by using Novel Numerical Modeling Approaches
Vilim Filipović is Associate professor of Soil Hydrology at University of Zagreb (Croatia), Faculty of Agriculture. He currently also holds appointment as a Research Fellow at Federation University in Australia. He focuses on understanding transport processes in soil by applying novel modelling approaches and examining the possibilities of decreasing environmental pressures on soil and water resources. 
He studied Agroecology followed by a PhD in Environmental Soil Physics, with both degrees finalized at University of Zagreb, Croatia. He continued his postdoctoral research focusing on quantification of pesticide and trace metals transport in soil at INRA. His career continued in the modeling of soil processes in mostly agricultural environments and critical zone science where he strongly relies on robust experimental and field research for data collection.
- Please tell us briefly about yourself and your research interest.
My expertise is in soil water dynamics, preferential flow and non-equilibrium transport processes in soil, the fate of contaminants (e.g., nutrients, pesticides, trace metals, pharmaceuticals), mine rehabilitation ecohydrology, and numerical modelling within the soil vadose zone. In my modeling work I strongly rely on using the HYDRUS suite and expanding its capabilities in various environmental conditions. I have lead the set-up of first Critical Zone Observatory in Croatia SUPREHILL which is supported by international team. The intention is to have a better understanding of local scale processes including subsurface preferential flow and to develop new methods of quantification. In Australia the focus lies in the application of modeling in mine rehabilitation ecohydrology and soil degradation processes.
-  How did you first become interested in soil modelling and learn about ISMC?
My first contact with soil models was during my PhD thesis and my ERASMUS exchange visit to Prague at Czech University of Life Sciences. I was there working within the group of Radka Kodešová when I applied modeling to my data set to quantify water flow and nitrate leaching. During that time I was introduced with HYDRUS and attended the course held by Jirka Šimůnek. The ISMC connection was a natural one as most of my colleagues and mentors were part of the community.
-Can you share with us your current research focus? And, please tell us briefly how your research could contribute to ISMC Science Panel’s activities
My current work is in estimation of soil and coal hydraulic properties and its relationship with root water uptake in formation of rehabilitated mining landscape. Furthermore, we are using models of different complexity levels to account for fractures in coal and determine fluxes exchange between coal and overlying soil. Other research includes identifying the importance of subsurface preferential flow in water balance at the hillslopes and overall water balance and soil physics related studies in agroecosystems. I’m currently involved in Pedotransfer functions and Land Surface Parameterization group lead by Lutz Weihermüller and Yonggen Zhang.
-Please tell us how can ISMC help you advance in your career?
ISMC provides a great starting point for anyone interested in modeling. The model portal provides a great overview of current models while conferences provide a great place to present your work and to connect with other scientists. The involvement in ISMC had extended my research network and initiated various collaborations. 
- What resources or skills would you recommend that early career members of ISMC should acquire? And how can ISMC help and support early career members in this regard?
The ISMC community covers all sorts of topics and it is hard to put in focus particular skills sets, but probably good understanding of the processes which one tends to model. A good background in STEM is a good start, however interest in modeling and scientific curiosity are probably even more important.
ISMC has already proven to be a good starting point for early career scientists through the resources offered on the website, by the community and through conferences. Organizing workshops focusing on particular topics and establishing new pathways for ECR to get recognition and involvement in the different scientific and organizational aspects of ISMC would be quite helpful.
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