We’ve not long to go until the British Ecological Society Annual Meeting, where you have a chance to chat to our Senior Editors. Get to know the people behind the decision letters first in our Meet the Editor series. Today we’re speaking to Martin Nuñez.
What can you tell us about the first paper you published?
My first research paper was the one from my undergrad thesis. I do not remember much about it, but that it had many many many versions!
What’s your favourite species and why?
I study invasive species, so is not that they are my favourite is the sense that I love them, since they are very problematic. That said, I am deeply fascinated by Pine trees, they are a relatively homogenous group (they all look like pines!), but with really different invasion abilities, traits and impacts.
Who inspired you most as a student?
I had amazing teachers at Univesidad del Comahue where I did my undergrad. It’s a fairly small university but it’s full of really good researchers, which is amazing for a young person to get inspiration. Many professors deeply influenced me as an undergrad, but two came to my mind now: Javier Puntieri, a botanist, and Estela Raffaele, an ecologist.
If you could wake up tomorrow with a new skill, what would it be?
Bureaucracy is big in Argentina. I wish I was better at filling out forms as many times as the administrator requires, and at following the fine print on the research contracts. This may qualify as a superpower, not sure …
Are you a good cook? What’s your signature dish?
I am the one that cooks at home, so I am good at cooking fast and with the products that are available. I’m not sure how good I am overall. My friends like a version of BBQ that I make here in Argentina. After several years in Tennessee, I got kind of good at that!
Please share a [funny] story about a paper you had rejected.
Not sure if any of these stories qualify as funny … but I have often seen authors of rejected papers use reviewers’ comments to make really strong new manuscripts that end up in great journals. After many many years submitting papers myself, I am getting better at not being sad when I get a paper rejected, but it is still not something I like!
What’s your favourite sports team and why?
The Argentina soccer team is my favourite. Why? I’m not sure; they make me suffer a lot! In a way, it is kind of like a paper that keeps being rejected: there is always hope, but not much more than hope…
If you could recommend one place for people to travel to on holiday, where would it be and why?
Big Island of Hawaii is amazing. Wildlife, volcanoes, beaches and of course many invasive species.
What was the first album you owned?
I think it was one of Madonna’s, many many many years ago.
If any fictional character could join your lab, who would it be and why?
Lately I’ve been reading a lot of Asterix to my eldest daughter, so the obvious answer is Paroramix, the druid (or Getafix, in English). If we can get him to publish or patent his potions we will do well.
How many British Ecological Society Annual Meetings have you attended? Which one was the best?
I have only attended two but they were both really good. I just love BES meetings. They are an ideal size for seeing many friends and great talks, but at the same time they are not too huge where you miss too many good things.
Are you attending #BES2018? If so, when is the best opportunity for people to meet you?
Yes! I will be at the BES stand very often. People can always email me to arrange a meeting.
Martin Nuñez is a Researcher at CONICET (National Scientific and Technical Research Council), Argentina and Professor at Universidad Nacional del Comahue, Argentina. Martin’s research interests include biological invasions, conservation, mycorrhizal ecology and forestry. He has worked in different parts of the Americas focused mostly on non-native plant species, their interactions with the local flora and fauna, and the problems they generate. He also works on different aspects of plant–soil biota interactions from basic and applied perspectives.
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