Some of my interesting ideas:Monitoring the Amazon rainforest is a large problem that must be broken
down in order to be effectively solved. It can be divided in a
multitude of ways.
Divide the intellectual area. Divide the problem into scientific
disciplines (Chemistry, Biology, Ecology, etc.). Within each discipline
determine specifically what quantitative characteristics to monitor. For
example, Ecology: measure biodiversity, Chemistry: measure composition of
soil. Determine the normal ranges for these characteristics. Then
determine what is a good trend, what is bad trend, use these as indicators.
For example, a decrease or increase in biodiversity is an ecological
trend, determine if bad or good; a decrease or increase in pH of soil
and/or water is a chemical trend, determine if bad or good.
Divide the physical area. Determine a non-biased, statistically sound
method of dividing the Amazon basin into manageable sample areas. The
number of simultaneous samples is limited to the number of researchers,
size of the coordinating group, and number of disciplines involved. A
research group will be assigned to these areas.
Divide the responsibility and work. Research groups will be created
containing scientists from each discipline involved. Each group is
responsible for one area of the rainforest. After gathering data, group
members get together to analyze data from all disciplines and draw a general
conclusion across these discipline for the area they are responsible
for (i.e. trends occurring in that specific area and possible causes) A
designated leader from each group reports the findings back to the
coordinating group (analyses, and raw data) Finally, a coordinating group
exists consisting of a leader (me in this case) and scientists
representing each discipline. The responsibility of this group is to coordinate
other scientists on where to do research and it conducts the final
analysis on data coming from all other groups to produce a complete picture
and status of the rainforest ecosystem.
After monitoring the rainforest for some period of time, negative and
positive trends begin to appear. The team must find the cause of these
trends. After the causes have been sufficiently proven, an appropriate
solution can be suggested.