INV05 The COVID-19 Shock As a Window into the Earth System

Abstract: In addition to its direct human toll, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused massive and rapid changes in societal organization and economic activity. These shifts in many cases represent large perturbations to human forcings in the earth system, and thus present an opportunity to learn about both earth system processes and the relationships between human and natural systems across a range of spatial and temporal scales. This innovative session invites work from across sections and disciplines that uses COVID-related changes (including application and lifting of regulations) to explore earth system questions in new ways, or to reveal new areas of inquiry. The meeting-within-a-meeting format will feature oral and poster sessions, as well as opportunities for researchers to gather in smaller groups to discuss results and build collaborations across sections, and will additionally provide networking and mentorship opportunities for early-career scientists.

Format: We propose a meeting-within-a-meeting format, to gather researchers from across disciplines who are using the "COVID Shock" to understand earth system processes and coupled human-natural dynamics. This format is especially beneficial for the pandemic period, as it enables convening across sections, and interfacing with the public. Moreover, since we do not know how the pandemic will evolve, our plan to include remote speakers and locations (should public health advice allow it) will keep our set of activities nimble and engaging no matter what format the fall meeting ultimately takes. Potential remote locations include Columbia and ETH.

We propose a mix of both oral and poster sessions, including a Union-style session for presentation of findings from across a range of perspectives (see below). A working group of interdisciplinary scientists has begun discussions and preliminary work on this topic, and invited speakers would largely be drawn from this group, with the specific composition determined by how research evolves in the coming months. Regular submissions for oral and poster sessions will also be critical for finding the best research being done and creating community around these endeavors. We anticipate that some of the visualizations of the science surrounding this unique moment will particularly suited for non-standard presentations as well. 

Hypothesis & Research Project Repository: We are very interested in ex-ante laying out of testable hypotheses around the COVID shock, as this is a rare opportunity in earth sciences. We propose, in the months leading up to the meeting, to build and host a repository for such hypotheses and research plans that can foster collaborations and serve to build science and community in the lead-up and follow-on to the Fall Meeting.

Breakout/Co-creation Sessions: We propose lunch working groups organized around specific topics where colleagues can discuss data, plan experiments, etc. The exact format will be determined as a function of the evolution of COVID-related research; we expect important ideas to surface from the open abstract submissions and participation in the knowledge repository.

Networking / Mentorship: We propose to conclude with a social event enabling continued discussion, and interaction between younger scientists and more senior members of the field, whether in person or virtual.

December 2020

From Thursday, 03 December 2020 09:00 AM

To Thursday, 03 December 2020 12:00 PM