08.11 - 11.11.2016  
Logan, USA
Contact person:
Jacob Freeman, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

A PAGES-supported workshop, titled "The Coevolution of Climate, Population and Food Systems in North and South America" will be held 8-11 November 2016 in Logan, Utah, USA.


Check in: Monday 7 November.
Conference starts: Tuesday 8 November.
Check out: Friday 11 or Saturday 12 November.


Utah State University, 0730 Old Main, Logan, UT 84322


The workshop will contribute to studying the long-term interaction between climate, human population growth and food systems to understand the coevolution of human systems and the earth's biophysical systems. Climate change is at the center of academic research and political debate.

One of the less-appreciated and less-understood aspects of climate science is the role of climate as a 'controller' of long-term changes in human population, and, in turn, how changes in human demography effect climate through human effects on the structure and function of ecosystems to produce food. The objective of this workshop is to study the long-term interaction between climate, human population growth and food systems to understand the coevolution of human systems and the earth's biophysical systems.

Our work contributes to understanding the food-climate-population nexus. A better understanding of this nexus is significant in a world where climate is changing; populations are growing; and biological diversity is in rapid decline, potentially weakening the adaptive capacity of ecosystems and food systems. Theory that explains the coevolution of human food systems, population and climate over the long-term is important for addressing these policy challenges.  


Two questions will organize the workshop. How does the interaction of climate, human demography and ecosystem diversity effect the selective pressure put on individuals to modify how they produce food, and what consequences do changes in human food production have for ecological diversity and the resilience of ecosystems and food systems to future changes in climate and/or human population?

The workshop will bring together paleoclimate experts, archaeologists and ecologists to synthesize and compare the paleoclimate and archaeological records within a coupled infrastructure systems framework.


1. Synthesize existing paleo-climate data and archeological data in the study regions represented by the participants
2. Develop a framework to compare the interaction of climate, ecosystem diversity and changes in human population and food production.

The workshop will be organized over five days around three activities: short courses, data synthesis, and writing.

The short courses will take place on the first day and will introduce the interdisciplinary frameworks of resilience thinking and coupled infrastructure systems. Data synthesis will take place on the second and third days. We will collate all existing data on paleoclimate, ecology, demography and human diet in our study regions. On the fourth and fifth days, we will write a synthetic document that compares the demographic responses of humans to climate change in our cases studies within a resilience or coupled infrastructure systems framework. A significant component of this document will be an outline or research design to move forward with inter-regional comparisons.

Registration deadlines and application requirements

There are a limited number of spaces available, with some funds available for travel and lodging for early career scientists and/or scientists from developing countries. Anyone interested in attending the workshop is invited to apply. The application deadline is 20 August.

To apply, email Jacob Freeman with your name, position, affiliation and a short letter of intent (30 lines) explaining why you would like to attend the workshop, what you hope to contribute to the efforts, and what you are most interested in studying. Please note if you will need funding support to attend the workshop.

Further information

Please contact Jacob Freeman: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.