, Volume 26, Issue 6, pp 1679-1682
Date: 04 Oct 2012

Special topic: integrating modelling and experimentation

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A tendency prevails in plant science that experimentalists while striving for empirical evidence, and modellers as anchored in theoretical grounds, pursue research in separate scientific worlds each, i.e. hardly focus on joint conceptual interfaces in establishing new knowledge. Such a lack of interaction is a crucial impediment in promoting theory on plant and plant systems performance and, hence, persistence. One must bear in mind that theory building is one component within an interacting “magic tripod” of knowledge establishment (Lüttge and Hütt 2009; Lüttge 2013), with the other two “legs” representing empirical research versus abstraction and integration through numeric modelling. Quantitative, process-based and cause-effect related, i.e. mechanistic modelling is of relevance here. The deficit of interaction between experimenting and modelling astonishes, as intrinsically these two scientific domains are coupled in mutualistic ways. The interaction produces beneficial outcome to