, Volume 683, Issue 1, pp 25–34

A community-based framework for aquatic ecosystem models


    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
  • David P. Hamilton
    • Centre for Biodiversity and Ecology ResearchUniversity of Waikato
  • Matthew R. Hipsey
    • School of Earth and EnvironmentUniversity of Western Australia
  • Karsten Bolding
    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
    • Bolding & Burchard ApS
  • Jorn Bruggeman
    • Bolding & Burchard ApS
    • Department of Earth SciencesUniversity of Oxford
  • Wolf M. Mooij
    • Department of Aquatic EcologyNetherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW)
  • Jan H. Janse
    • Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL)
  • Anders Nielsen
    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
    • Department of AgroecologyAarhus University, Research Centre Foulum
  • Erik Jeppesen
    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
    • SINO-DANISH Research Centre
  • J. Alex Elliott
    • Algal Modelling Unit, Lake Ecosystem GroupCentre for Ecology and Hydrology Lancaster
  • Vardit Makler-Pick
    • Oranim Academic College of Education
  • Thomas Petzoldt
    • Faculty of Forest, Geo and Hydro Sciences, Institute of HydrobiologyTechnische Universitaet Dresden
  • Karsten Rinke
    • Department of Lake ResearchHelmholtz Centre for Environmental Research-UFZ
  • Mogens R. Flindt
    • Institute of BiologyUniversity of Southern Denmark
  • George B. Arhonditsis
    • Ecological Modeling Laboratory, Department of Physical & Environmental SciencesUniversity of Toronto
  • Gideon Gal
    • Kinneret Limnological LaboratoryIOLR
  • Rikke Bjerring
    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
  • Koji Tominaga
    • Department of BiologyUniversity of Oslo
    • Norwegian Institute for Water Research
  • Jochem’t Hoen
    • Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management Group, Department of Environmental SciencesWageningen University
  • Andrea S. Downing
    • Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management Group, Department of Environmental SciencesWageningen University
  • David M. Marques
    • Instituto de Pesquisas Hidráulicas (IPH)Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS)
  • Carlos R. FragosoJr.
    • Centre for TechnologyFederal University of Alagoas
  • Martin Søndergaard
    • Department of BioscienceAarhus University
  • Paul C. Hanson
    • Center for LimnologyUniversity of Wisconsin
Opinion Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10750-011-0957-0

Cite this article as:
Trolle, D., Hamilton, D.P., Hipsey, M.R. et al. Hydrobiologia (2012) 683: 25. doi:10.1007/s10750-011-0957-0


Here, we communicate a point of departure in the development of aquatic ecosystem models, namely a new community-based framework, which supports an enhanced and transparent union between the collective expertise that exists in the communities of traditional ecologists and model developers. Through a literature survey, we document the growing importance of numerical aquatic ecosystem models while also noting the difficulties, up until now, of the aquatic scientific community to make significant advances in these models during the past two decades. Through a common forum for aquatic ecosystem modellers we aim to (i) advance collaboration within the aquatic ecosystem modelling community, (ii) enable increased use of models for research, policy and ecosystem-based management, (iii) facilitate a collective framework using common (standardised) code to ensure that model development is incremental, (iv) increase the transparency of model structure, assumptions and techniques, (v) achieve a greater understanding of aquatic ecosystem functioning, (vi) increase the reliability of predictions by aquatic ecosystem models, (vii) stimulate model inter-comparisons including differing model approaches, and (viii) avoid ‘re-inventing the wheel’, thus accelerating improvements to aquatic ecosystem models. We intend to achieve this as a community that fosters interactions amongst ecologists and model developers. Further, we outline scientific topics recently articulated by the scientific community, which lend themselves well to being addressed by integrative modelling approaches and serve to motivate the progress and implementation of an open source model framework.


Ecological modellingOpen sourceModel development

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011