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March 2020

Call for Working Groups + Call for Nominations + Publications + Workshops

Call for Nominations: ISMC Co-Chair

Background: Nominations are now being accepted for the co-Chair position of the International Soil Modeling Consortium (ISMC), an organization dedicated to integrating and advancing soil systems modeling, data gathering, and observational capabilities. ISMC is composed of more than 750 (as of March 2020) active members who are leading experts in modelling soil processes within all major soil disciplines. The members seek to address major scientific gaps in describing key processes and their long term impacts to different soil functions and ecosystem services. This is done by promoting integration of soil modelling expertise in neighboring disciplines (climate, land surface, ecology, hydrology, and other models).


Expectations and Responsibilities of the co-Chair: As part of the ISMC leadership team, the co-Chair is expected to provide ideas and approaches for expanding the use of soil models by other disciplines involved in biospheric processes and to create collaborative opportunities with other scholarly institutions involved in related research. The co-Chair will also preside at bi-annual ISMC meetings and those of the Executive Board (usually quarterly), complete an annual reporting to the Executive Board of ISMC activities, and plan for future activities, as necessary. ISMC co-Chairs also are responsible for communicating and recommending actions to the Advisory Board. Level of effort is usually low to moderate, depending on pending activities. The co-Chair position is for a three-year term.


Process for Election and Succession: Nominations for the position can be submitted by self or other nominators via e-mail to the co-ordination office (, until April 20th, 2020. Please include a current CV and a letter of interest in the position. The slate of nominations for new Chairs will be approved and voted on by a simple majority of the Executive Board by May 3, 2020. The Co-Chair begins her/his duties on June 30, 2020.


Call for Working Groups

Working groups are open collectives with specific targeted objectives achievable in a relatively short timeline. Working Groups are expected to meet regularly and report to the broader ISMC community via associated ISMC Science Panels at the half way point and conclusion of their life cycle. Working groups can be renewed and should demonstrate progress towards a specific deliverable. Working groups are expected to align with the broader ISMC mission and designate a primary ISMC Science Panel they are associated with (see below, or In turn, ISMC supports Working Groups in achieving their objective. Working groups are intended to be open to the broader ISMC community and spark new collaborations via proposal writing, manuscripts, or software development.



Baartman JEM, Melsen LA, Moore D, Van der Ploeg MJ, 2020. On the complexity of model complexity: Viewpoints across the geosciences. Catena 186: 104261 Pre-print: ResearchGate

The main findings were:

  • The number of processes explicitly included and the number of interactions / feedbacks incorporated were seen as important determinants of complexity.
  • Confidence was not per se higher in the simulations of a complex model compared to a simple one.
  • Neither gender, the discipline within the geosciences, nor career stage or work sector, explained the characterization of model complexity

Questionnaire and data: Baartman, J.E.M. (Jantiene); Melsen, L.A. (Lieke); Moore, D. (Demie); Van der Ploeg, M.J. (Martine) (2020) Questionnaire responses to model complexity in geosciences. 4TU.Centre for Research Data. Dataset.


Short Course on DAISY - Agro-ecological model
24-28 August 2020, Copenhagen, Denmark

The short course offers an introduction to the
DAISY agro ecological model. It covers the main processes in DAISY:

  • Water flow (matrix and biopore flow)
  • Solute transport (focus on nitrate and pesticide transport)
  • Heat transport
  • Soil organic matter turnover
  • Soil vegetation atmosphere transfer of water and energy
  • Crop model
  • Management practice

Link for further information:





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