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Citation. Power, M. E.; Tilman, D.; Carpenter, S. R.; (et al). 1995. Letters to Science: The role of experiments in ecology. Science 270:561. [1667 LTER]
Introduction. We thank Science for giving ecology coverage in the "Frontiers in Biology: Ecology" special section (21 July, pp. 313-360). It was unfortunate that the lead News article by Wade Roush, "When rigor meets reality," highlights a minor squabble that stemmed from the remarks of one postdoctoral researcher. We encourage the editors and reporters of Science to continue coming to ecological meetings so that they can broaden their knowledge and expand their coverage of the substantive issues. Ecology is a true frontier, being perhaps the most complex system that science has ever tried to understand. Increasingly, ecologists are combining experiments, observations, and theory to expand the temporal and spatial scale of our inferences. We are strongly motivated by the pressing need for answers to major questions of direct relevance to the long-term sustainability and habitability of Earth.