Sections are organized within ESA’s membership to promote interaction among those with similar research and discipline interests. Sections organize activities and facilitate communication among their members.

ESA welcomed four new sections in 2015: the Ecological Restoration Section, Invasion Ecology Section, Open Science Section, and Communication and Engagement Section. In 2016, the Black Ecologists Section was created.

Links to section websites and social media are provided at the end of each paragraph. The section name links to history information, if available. With ESA’s Centennial in 2015, the Historical Records Committee strongly encourages all sections to research and publish their history. We are happy to help—please let us hear from you!

  • The Animal Behavior and Sociobiology Section, formed in 1956, was a large (>1000 members) and visible section until 1964, when it merged with a similar Division of the American Society of Zoologists to form the Animal Behavior Society.  Thereafter it largely ceased to function as a Section and was dissolved in 1993.
  • The Applied Ecology Section is the second-largest and third-oldest of the active sections within this Society. The Section was established in 1971 and strives to enhance communication about applying ecological principles to solve practical environmental problems.
    Section website
  • The Aquatic Ecology Section advances, coordinates, and assists research and dissemination of theoretical and applied knowledge in all branches of aquatic ecology.  It is the largest and oldest active section, having been established in 1961 as a successor to a Fish and Fisheries committee created in 1917.
    Section website | Twitter @ESAAquatic
  • The Inclusive Ecology Section, approved in 2016, will strive to facilitate inclusivity by working with the efforts of other ESA sections and programs to educate, support and mentor, and provide a setting for sharing concerns.
    Section website
  • The International Affairs Section was established in 1978 to support and manage the relationships between ESA members and the world-wide community of ecologists through INTECOL and other international organizations. Inactive 2005; dissolved 2015.
  • The Long-Term Studies Section was founded in 1988 to encourage research; exchange ideas; facilitate communication; and enhance public understanding of the relevance of long-term ecological data.
    Section website
  • The Open Science Section was organized in 2015 to encourage and support ecologists who are striving to practice Open Science principles in their research, teaching, outreach, and engagement with policymakers, managers, and other ecologists.
    Section website  |  Twitter @ESAopensci
  • The Policy Section, founded in 2010, acts to foster interaction among ecologists who have worked or currently work in public policy positions and works with the Public Affairs Office to facilitate the participation of students.
    Section website
  • The Rangeland Ecology Section, founded in 2000, facilitates communication of all aspects of rangeland ecology and management among applied and basic ecologists, natural resource managers and interested members of the public.
    Section website
  • The Soil Ecology Section, founded in 1993, seeks to promote an understanding of the importance of soil biota among ecologists, soil scientists, and members of related disciplines and to encourage and support education and research in soil ecology.
    Section website  |  Twitter @ESAsoilecology
  • The Statistical Ecology Section, founded in 1989, seeks to encourage research in statistical theory and methodology applied to ecological problems and to facilitate communication between the disciplines of statistics and ecology.
    Section website
  • The Student Section, founded in 2000, aims to facilitate communication among all student members of the Society, enhance interaction between students and the Society as a whole, and to provide an effective way for students to communicate their needs to the Society.
    Section website  |  History timeline  |  Twitter @ESA_students
  • The Theoretical Ecology Section was formed in 1993 to foster theoretical research in all areas of ecology and research collaboration between theoreticians and experimental/field ecologists; and encourage the application of ecological theory to the resolution of societal problems.
    Section website
  • The Traditional Ecological Knowledge Section, founded in 2002, works to promote the understanding, dissemination and respectful use of traditional ecological knowledge in ecological research, application and education and increase participation in ESA by indigenous people .
    Section website


At this time, HRC is not tracking section awards, but old records may be found at Awards given by Chapters and Sections.

One comment on “Sections
  1. Alexis K. Heinz says:

    A Landscape Ecology section would be a wonderful addition to ESA.

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