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Readers will gain an understanding of the goals of science, the structure of theory, the kinds of theory relevant to ecology, the way that theory changes, what constitutes objectivity in contemporary science, and the role of paradigms and frameworks for synthesis within ecology and in integration with other disciplines. Finally, how theory can inform and anchor the public use of ecological knowledge in civic debates is laid out. This new edition refines the understanding of how the structure and change of theory can improve the growth and application of one of the 21st century’s key sciences.
* Provocative treatment of relationship between the practice of ecology and its historical and philosophical foundations
* Appropriate for ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and other serious students of natural history
* Written by prominent figures in ecology
Audience: Advanced undergraduates, graduate students, faculty and researchers in ecology. Both theoreticians and practicing ecologists will want this book. Libraries with strong ecology collections will be likely buyers.
Foreword Preface Part I: Advancing the Discipline and Enhancing Applications Ch. 1 Integration in Ecology Ch. 2 Understanding in Ecology Part II: The Nature of Theory Ch. 3 The Anatomy of Theory Ch. 4 The Ontogeny of Theory Ch. 5 The Taxonomy of Theory Part III: From Theory to Integration and Application Ch. 6 Fundamental Questions:Changes in Understanding Ch. 7 Integration and Synthesis Part IV: Theory and Its Environment Ch. 8 Constraint and Objectivity in Ecological Integration Ch. 9 Ecological Understanding and the Public