Encyclopedia of Biodiversity

Encyclopedia of Biodiversity

by Simon A. Levin
     
 

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First used in 1980, "biodiversity" often describes the abundance, variety, and genetic constitution of native animals and plants, and has been linked with politics and environmental technology. Although the 1986 National forum on biodiversity brought issues of biodiversity to the fore, the inescapable need to know more about the diversity of life on Earth continues to… See more details below

Overview

First used in 1980, "biodiversity" often describes the abundance, variety, and genetic constitution of native animals and plants, and has been linked with politics and environmental technology. Although the 1986 National forum on biodiversity brought issues of biodiversity to the fore, the inescapable need to know more about the diversity of life on Earth continues to remain unmet.
In recent years, biodiversity has influenced important scientific considerations, international agreements, conventions, conservation initiatives, political debates, and socio-economic implications. Knowledge derived from the study of biodiversity will affect the quality of life enjoyed in the future by influencing decision-making processes and aiding new discoveries.
The science of biodiversity has become the science of our future. Our awareness of the loss of biodiversity has brought a long overdue appreciation of the magnitude of our loss and a determination to develop the tools to protect our future. The Encyclopedia of Biodiversity brings together, for the first time, a study of the dimensions of diversity. It examination of the services biodiversity provides, and measures to protect it. Major themes of the work include the evolution of biodiversity, systems for classifying and defining biodiversity, ecological patterns and theories of biodiversity, and an assessment of contemporary patterns and trends in biodiversity.

KEY FEATURES
* Distinguished Editorial Board headed by Simon A. Levin, with many other prominent scientists serving as editors
* More than 300 separate articles, covering 20 different subject areas, from Evolution to Habitats to Economic Issues--all original contributions commissioned for this work
* Approximately 1,000 figures and tables complement the text
* More than 3,000 glossary entries explain key terms

As the Director of the Princeton Environmental Institute and the George M. Moffett Professor of Biology, Simon A. Levin has received many honors and awards for his work in the modeling of ecological systems, the dynamics of populations and communities, spatial heterogeneity and problems of scale, and mathematical and theoretical ecology. Recently, he was named to the National Academy of Sciences. He has taught at institutions around the world, including the University of Oxford, Stanford University, the University of Kyoto, The Weizmann Institute, and the University of British Columbia. He sits on the boards of the American Association of the Advancement of Science, the Beijer Institute, the Committee of Concerned Scientists, and the H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics, and the Environment, among others.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Five volumes contain 313 signed articles by leading international authors. From the preface: "The entries...have been arranged alphabetically, but the coverage is designed functionally. At the core is a comprehensive survey of biodiversity, across taxonomic groups and ecological regions. The emergence of biodiversity is then placed in an evolutionary perspective, as background for an understanding of current trends. Finally, a review is given of institutions and other mechanisms that exist and are needed for the preservation of biodiversity...." The "contents by subject" listing groups entries according to theme, among them: agriculture, conservation and restoration, economics, environmental conditions and effects, evolution, extinctions, genetics, geographic and global issues, habitats and ecosystems, human effects and interventions, and population issues. Each entry is carefully constructed, with an outline, a glossary, a summary, cross references, and a bibliography accompanying the main body of text. Purchase of the print version confers access to the complementary web site. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780122268649
Publisher:
Elsevier Science & Technology Books
Publication date:
01/01/2001

What People are saying about this

Kenneth J. Arrow
Kenneth J. Arrow, Joan Kenney Professor of Economics, Emeritus and Professor of Operations Research, Emeritus, Stanford University, Stanford, California

The current extinction of species as the result of human agency has aroused world attention and calls for appropriate policy. This encyclopedia aims to bring together the knowledge necessary for appropriate and well-directed action. From the titles of the articles and the quality of the contributors, it will clearly be an invaluable source for both scholarship and policy.

R May
Sir Robert May, Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK Government

My participation in the development of this Encyclopedia has been a very encouraging experience, particularly in providing an opportunity to see how broadly interest in biodiversity has spread. The Encyclopedia has deliberately been organised [sic] in a most inclusive way, and this will help people of all backgrounds learn more about their world and the other living things they share it with.

John Sawhill
Compiled by a virtual who's who in the field of conservation science, the Encyclopedia of Biodiversity highlights the critical importance of biodiversity and illustrates why all thinking people should care about stemming the loss of our natural heritage.
—(John Sawhill, President and CEO, The Nature Conservancy)
Barry Lopez
The viability of any twenty-first century politics will hinge on its effective grasp of the principles of biodiversity. The Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, a clarification of key concepts in five volumes, will prove to be a terrific source for scholars, activists, and decision makers.
—Barry Lopez, Author of Arctic Dreams
Thomas E. Lovejoy
Thomas E. Lovejoy, Chief Biodiversity Advisor, The World Bank

A scholarly resource for understanding this exceptional and living planet we call home...so solid and authoritative no library should be without.

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