Treaty Organization Advanced Institutes are excellent examples. Scientific societies can also hold joint meetings to bring their members together, as happened at Edmonton recently with the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography and the Society of Wetland Scientists. It is not enough, however, merely to bring scientists from different backgrounds together; they must also be brought to focus directly in individual sessions on the functional couplings among wetlands, streams, lakes, and oceans rather than simply to compare ecosystem processes such as net primary production, food chain dynamics, cycling of nutrients and toxins, and emissions of trace gases, valuable as such environmental and biotic comparisons may be.
Professional recognition for ecosystem generalists who study functional couplings is also important. If they are regarded merely as dilettantes, their careers are likely to suffer in departments staffed largely by specialists.
Students can be recruited more effectively for graduate studies that deal with linkages among aquatic ecosystems (and with upland ecosystems and the atmosphere) if they learn about them as undergraduates. Such teaching should not be left too late or students will already have become restricted in their studies, and barriers will have arisen to an interecosystem approach. Under what rubric such an approach can be taught most effectively remains to be seen; if a few examples are presented in courses strongly focused primarily on one of the above-mentioned disciplines, they are unlikely to achieve their purpose. Courses on ecosystem ecology and biogeochemistry may be the best places to proselytize for interecosystem studies, especially if they are team-taught by specialists in the different types of ecosystems who are committed to a focus on linkages in both teaching and research. Support for curriculum development could be sought from education-oriented private foundations and from the recently expanded Education Program of the National Science Foundation.
Organizational support for teaching the functional couplings among ecosystems (and with the atmosphere) might come most readily from the linkage of specialist departments into interdisciplinary programs, centers, institutes, etc. The Watershed Science Program of Utah State University is an example, linking groups in fisheries and wildlife, forest resources, geography and earth resources, and range science. Such programs, however, may not always have the assured staffing and line-item budgets required for long-term commitment, and the allegiance of program faculty (and often their graduate students) to their home departments may make such programs less than ideal. Departments that are organized specifically