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The Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment, a 100-year study, receives the Purdue Agriculture 2023 TEAM Award

The Purdue Agriculture TEAM Award has honored an interdisciplinary team annually since 1995, based on the maxim, “Together Everyone Achieves More.” The 2023 awardees belong to the Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment (HEE), a 100-year study on the effects of forest management on plants, animals and fungi.

The HEE studies several complex, connected aspects of forests in Indiana and the Central Hardwoods Region. Major areas of research are forestry dynamics, digital forestry, acorn production, birds, bats and other small mammals, salamanders, wood-boring beetles, moths, prescribed fires and ectomycorrhizal fungi. This work has directly informed state environmental policy and forest management. 

Extension and outreach are fundamental to the HEE. Professional training, education, public engagement, and over 80 scientific and extension publications have been impacted by HEE research and provided invaluable information to resource managers and scientists across the Midwest.

“The Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment team has not only produced an incredible portfolio of research, but they have also done a superior job in sharing the information they have gathered with those who can apply it in Indiana’s forests and beyond,” said Bernie Engel, Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture. 

The HEE team members from Purdue honored by the award are: Cathie Aime, John “Barny” Dunning, Songlin Fei, Elizabeth Flaherty, Jeff Holland, Mike Jenkins, Mike Saunders, Rob Swihart, Patrick Zollner and Charlotte Owings. Their work crosses over the areas of Botany & Plant Pathology, Entomology, Forestry and Natural Resources and the Institute for Digital Forestry. Kamal Islam, Joy O’Keefe and Kieth Summerville from Ball State University, the University of Illinois, and Drake University, respectively, are also award-winning project members.
Awardees of the TEAMS Award Pictured in Pfendler Some members of the Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment were able to accept the Purdue Agriculture TEAM Award in-person on January 10th, 2024, in the Deans' Auditorium in Pfendler. Pictured (from left to right) are Rob Swihart, Elizabeth Flaherty, Mike Jenkins, Songlin Fei, Mike Saunders, Charlotte Owings, Jeff Holland and John (Barny) Dunning.

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