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Odum, Eugene P. (1913–2002)

Sometimes called the father of modern ecosystems ecology, Eugene P. Odum helped to make ecosystem a household word in the United States in the late 20th century. Beginning in the 1950s, Odum developed radiation ecology, later ecosystems ecology, as a science of interconnections among interlocking human and natural systems. This helped make ecological perspectives, which focus on interrelations and interdependence among elements of the whole, nearly synonymous with holistic views of nature and environment among varied communities of scientists, environmental managers, and environmentalists. However, these groups often understood the implications of the new ecology differently.

Odum wrote Fundamentals of Ecology, the university textbook that introduced the ecosystems perspective to generations of ecology students over the run of five editions between 1953 and 2004. In 1960 he ...

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