Meet the Editor: Marc Cadotte

Our new journal Ecological Solutions and Evidence is currently recruiting another Lead Editor. The new Lead Editor will be joining the Senior Editor team alongside Lead Editor Holly Jones and Editor-in-Chief (EiC) Marc Cadotte, who we are getting to know better in this ‘Meet the Editor’ conversation.

Marc has previously contributed to a similar conversation while he was Executive Editor of Journal of Applied Ecology, to which we reference in some of our questions below.

Father of the Year

Tea or Coffee?

Tea. Why do people even drink coffee?

Are you an early bird or night owl?

Early bird.

What’s your favourite scientific paper?

The Leibold and colleagues’ metacommunity paper came out during my PhD and really influenced how I think about ecological communities – specifically that they are not independent of the surrounding landscape and they integrate processes across different spatial scales.

In our last conversation, you said you would love to be able to scuba dive if you could wake up with a new skill. Have you learned how to scuba dive since?

Ha, no. Old dog; new tricks.

What could have been…

What job would you be doing if you weren’t in research/academia?

Chef. I love cooking and experimenting with recipes. 75% of the time it works.

What music are you listening to at the moment?

I’ve been digging deep into my musical roots and listening to a lot of the Clash these days.

If you could see one movie again for the first time, what would it be and why?

I just starting rewatching the Lord of the Ring series with my kids (since we are stuck at home). We love these movies and spent a few weeks driving to filming sites throughout New Zealand a couple of years ago and so have a special connection to many of the scenes. I’d love to have spent time in New Zealand and then watch it for the first time.

A messy evening’s on the cards!

Who would be your dream dinner guest and why? What would you eat?

I’m stuck between E.O. Wilson and Ryan Reynolds. Wilson, because I’d love to hear about anecdotes of his early research endeavours to Papua New Guinea. Reynolds, well, I like joke escalation. I’d prepare the messiest dish I could think of, something like soupy taco fillings in broken shells. Just to see how it all goes.

If you had one superpower, what would it be and why?

This question always stumps me. I’m torn between a smart answer (bending time and space) or the glamorous power (flight or super strength).

Now to the more slightly more serious questions – what are the greatest differences in the challenges now facing ecosystems compared with when you first started your academic career?

I’m not sure that there are major differences, but that we now realise that multiple stressors (e.g. land use change, climate change, invasive species) can all have synergistic effects on ecosystems, which accelerate biodiversity loss.

What do you think are the biggest opportunities or potential opportunities for ecology in the next decade?

I think that emerging genomics and sequencing tools that provide us unlimited opportunity to peer into the microbial networks that blanket the Earth and form relationships with all species will fundamentally alter our understanding of ecological systems.

Prof. Marc Cadotte was trained as a community ecologist, first as an MSc student under Jonathan Lovett-Doust at the University of Windsor in Canada, examining the effects of forest fragmentation on forest structure in Madagascar coastal rain forests, then as a PhD student with Jim Drake at the University of Tennessee combining ecological theory with experiments (PhD 2006). He was postdoctoral research fellow at the National Centre for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis in Santa Barbara, California, USA, where he examined the role of evolutionary relationships among species in influencing the health and functioning of ecosystems. He is currently a Professor of biological sciences at the University of Toronto-Scarborough where he also held the term-limited endowed TD Professor of Urban Forest Conservation and Biology chair (2013-2019). He is also the Editor-in-Chief of Ecological Solutions and Evidence and Chair of Applied Ecology Resources, two new publication projects developed with the British Ecological Society which provide a new communication paradigm for traversing the research-practice divide in ecology. He researches the links between biodiversity and ecosystem function, how to predict and control invasive species, and how environmental changes influences the delivery of ecosystem services. He has published more than 150 articles and has pioneered biodiversity measures that quantify species differences. Along with Jonathan Davies, Prof. Cadotte is the author of the recently published book: Phylogenies in Ecology, published by Princeton University Press. Prof. Cadotte has accrued over 11,000 citations and has an H-index of 52 (according to Google Scholar), and is listed on Web of Science’s top 1% most cited scientists in environmental science since 2017.

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