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Green Plant Phylogeny Research Coordination Group

Debra Waters dwaters at unix1.sncc.lsu.edu
Tue May 7 13:55:01 EST 1996

                    Green Plant Phylogeny
                 Research Coordination Group
                      World Wide Web Site
 The Green Plant Phylogeny Research Coordination Group (GPPRCG) is
pleased to announce a World Wide Web site at:


        This website will provide the framework from which the GPPRCG will
keep the scientific community informed of its mission, upcoming meetings
and events, related websites, and most important, data matrices of interest to
anyone concerned with research involving the phylogenetic relationships of
green plants.  It will continue to be under construction, so stop in frequently
to check progress and contribute your own information.

        The GPPRCG, set up in September 1994, is sponsored by a grant from
the DOE/NSF/USDA Joint Program on Collaborative Research in Plant
Biology (USDA grant no. 94-37105-0713); the PIs are M.A. Buchheim,
University of Tulsa, R. L. Chapman, Louisiana State University, and B.D.
Mishler, University of California at Berkeley.  The aim of the group is to
initiate and facilitate interaction among independent research groups
worldwide that are interested in green plant phylogeny.  This initiative is
based on the insight that further progress in this area of research could greatly
benefit from a major collaborative effort to coordinate data collection by
establishing exemplars (selected key taxa) and suggesting characters to be
studied for each.  Therefore, the specific objectives of the  GPPRCG are:  1)
coordinate data gathering, addressing both taxon and character sampling, 2)
establish and manage morphological, molecular, and other relevant data
bases,  which will be made available to researchers, teachers, and students, 3)
stimulate creative approaches to investigating green plant phylogeny ,
including novel approaches to data analysis and the handling of large data
sets, and 4) encourage collaborative research.

        Three GPPRCG workshops have already been held, with seven more
scheduled through 1999.  Each workshop has a different focus (the summary
of the first workshop is currently posted on the website; the others will
follow), and the meeting sites will alternate between major North American
scientific conferences and other venues.  Although the workshops
themselves must remain small because of budgetary and logistic constraints,
wide participation in the GPPRCG and coordination of research activity can be
achieved through the website.  Data availability tables for exemplar taxa will
soon provide a readily accessible and up-to-date summary of the current
knowledge of phylogenetically important plants.  These tables will also
highlight shortcomings or gaps in the data and thereby provide a guide to

        The purpose of the GPPRCG is to encourage coordination of research
activity, but not to direct it; therefore, the group will not allocate discreet tasks
to individuals or labs, nor fund research projects  All researchers interested in
plant phylogeny are encouraged to participate freely and equally by
contributing results to the data availability tables.  Since only independently
published data will end up in the final matrix, each investigator will get credit
for his or her own research.  Contributors to the matrix will be invited to
participate in an edited publication that will attempt a complete and well-
supported high-level phylogenetic analysis of green plants.  This publication
will take the form of a book which will include multiauthored chapters,
along with the data matrix in electronic form (with all contributors
acknowledged).  This work is scheduled for completion in time for
presentation at the 1999 International Botanical Congress in St. Louis.
Interested individuals are encouraged to investigate the GPPRCG website and
contact the PIs:  M.A. Buchheim (Buchheimma at Centum.utulsa.edu), R.L.
Chapman (BTRuss at unix1.sncc.lsu.edu), and B.D. Mishler
(bmishler at garnet.berkeley.edu).

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