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Climate Change on Mountains

Reviving Humboldt’s Approach to Science

Authors:

  • Introduces the reader to the impacts of climate change in the tropical Andes, an understudied part of the world

  • Makes connections between Humboldt and the science of today and what it means in terms of climate change

  • Shows how unexpected connections between disciplines, continents & epochs can enrich scientific understanding

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Table of contents (7 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xiv
  2. Islands

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages 23-58
  3. Time Capsules

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages 59-100
  4. Underwater Flies

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages 101-183
  5. Telling Stories

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages 185-225
  6. Conclusion: Humboldt Tenured

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages 227-232
  7. Correction to: Telling Stories

    • Olivier Dangles
    Pages C1-C1
  8. Back Matter

    Pages 233-266

About this book

The world is warming up rapidly and this change is most noticeable in mountains with already observable consequences on flora and fauna. This book presents concepts, methodologies and major achievements of recent research in climate change ecology in mountains by placing this research in a historical perspective, that of travelers and naturalists of the Romantic era, and first of all Alexander von Humboldt.

There is now a renewed interest, both in academia and beyond, in Humboldt, his writings and his view of nature. But how can we actually make use of his writings? How can we put his philosophy into practice? How can we still learn from past scientific figures and do a better science today?

In this book, the author presents how it is possible to succeed in modern science by returning to sources, by renewing the tradition of past polymaths such as Humboldt, and by having a fully humanistic approach in science. He illustrates his point based on his 15-year experience in the study of the ecological effects of climate change in the tropical Andes, showing how he has incorporated approaches from other disciplines, from different branches of science, from history and the arts to achieve a more comprehensive view of his scientific field. Alongside hard data, discoveries by past naturalists build our understanding of the world but appealing to our emotions makes us want to understand it. In the author’s view this is a productive and enjoyable way of doing science that speaks to our humanity and also increases our knowledge about nature.

This academic cross-over book appeals to a broad audience of students, scientists or, supported by attractive illustrations, to anyone interested in the adventure or making of science, but not necessarily with a scientific background.

Authors and Affiliations

  • French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development, Montpellier, France

    Olivier Dangles

About the author

Olivier Dangles is an ecologist at the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD) based at the Center of Functional and Evolutionary Ecology in Montpellier, France. After joining the IRD in 2006, he worked as a visiting professor in Ecuador, Bolivia and at Cornell University. Over the last decade his work in the tropical Andes has allowed significant contributions in the field of aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity in the face of climate change. His enthusiasm to deepen knowledge about ecology also makes him a passionate teacher and science communicator, especially through wildlife photography. His fieldwork in high-altitude ecosystems combined with innovative research in ecology at the interface with a wide array of other disciplines (physics, glaciology, hydrology, information science, sustainability, geography, sociology, history) offers a unique breadth of science equal to the task of perpetuating Humboldt’s legacy.

Bibliographic Information

Buy it now

Buying options

eBook USD 29.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book USD 37.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Other ways to access