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Pages 1-6

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From page 1...
... Today's technologies -- such as streaming data, remote sensing, robot-driven monitoring, automated DNA sequencing, and nanoparticle environmental sensors -- provide means for field stations to retain their special connection to nature and still interact with the rest of the world in ways that can fuel breakthroughs in the environmental, physical, natural, and social sciences. The intellectual and natural capital of today's field stations present a solid platform, but many need enhancements of infrastructure and dynamic leadership if they are to meet the challenges of the complex                                                              1Inthis report, for the sake of brevity, the committee refers to field stations, marine laboratories, and nature reserves as field stations.
From page 2...
... Field observations have played and will continue to play critical roles in the physical, natural, and social sciences. Field stations are national assets formed by the unique merger of natural capital, intellectual capital, social fabric, and infrastructure that leads to the important scientific endeavors required if we are to understand our rapidly changing natural world.
From page 3...
... Field stations support a wide range of public outreach and engagement programs -- public lectures and workshops, science cafes, field trips, and nature walks, among other informal education opportunities -- to enhance public understanding of science. The committee applauds these public outreach efforts because they break the mold of traditional science communication and more actively involve public audiences in science.
From page 4...
... It can capture social and intellectual capital to tackle major questions and seize opportunities as no single field station can, and it enhances creativity and innovation by attracting a wide range of scientists and promoting multidisciplinary collaboration. The most successful and sustainable networks start small and are self-defining; they encourage reciprocity among network members.
From page 5...
... Financial Security for a Modern Infrastructure Aging infrastructure, the need for advanced technology and cyberinfrastructure, and evolving safety regulations are increasing financial demands on field stations as they upgrade to meet emerging science and societal challenges. Sustainable funding for modern infrastructure will be possible only if field station leaders develop compelling value propositions, strategic plans, and business models for operations that can secure base funding support that in turn can be leveraged by support from diverse sources.
From page 6...
... The metrics should be designed so that they can be aggregated for regions and the entire nation. Universities and other host institutions and funding organizations should support the gathering and transparent reporting of field station performance metrics because such information will enhance the stations' ability to document their contributions to the nation's research and education enterprise.

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