Pedometrics News, March 2015

Call for nominations Best Paper in Pedometrics 2014

Following the successful process for Best Paper in Pedometrics 2013, won by Titia Mulder and colleagues, we are now ready to repeat the process for papers published in 2014. Both the 2013 and 2014 awards will be presented at Pedometrics 2015 (September, in Córdoba, Andalucía, Spain). This is a prestigious award, which recognizes work that is judged to be of importance and of excellent quality by your peers. It stimulates us all to do top-quality, influential and innovative work. The quantity and quality of work in our field is outstanding, and with this award we recognize the best, and also give the nominated papers well-deserved exposure.

You are all now invited to nominate one or more papers. They must be relevant to pedometrics and have been published in recognized journals with a final publication date in calendar year 2014 CE. You may nominate a paper on which you are (co)-author. Please check the website for full procedure. E-mail your nomination to by D G Rossiter:

DEADLINE: for nomination is 21-March-2015; voting will be from mid-April to mid-May.


Pedometrics 2015 – Call for Abstract

We are very excited to invite you to Cordoba Spain, for Pedometrics 2015, September 15th-18th, 2015.

This Conference incorporates meetings for the IUSS WG on Soil Landscape Modelling and Soil Monitoring. All aspects of Pedometrics will be covered, include: Soil-landscape modelling: mechanistic & empirical, Soil Morphometrics (image analysis, remote sensing, 3D soil imaging), Soil sampling and monitoring, Field experimental design, Digital soil mapping and proximal soil sensing, Bayesian statistics and Hierarchical Modelling in soils, Fuzzy cognitive mapping, Soil Spatial and Temporal Scaling, Soil Ecosystem Services, Big Data in Soil Science, and more.

More info at:


Soil and landscape evolution

The first newsletter of the IUSS-working group on modelling of soil and landscape evolution is available at It includes an interesting article by Peter Finke on What’s missing in soilscape modelling?


Journal bans Significance test

Recently, the editors of Basic and Applied Social Psychology journal wrote that “the null hypothesis significance testing procedure (NHSTP) is invalid, and thus authors would be not required to perform it”. This is not a joke, “authors will have to remove all vestiges of the NHSTP (p-values, t-values, F-values, statements about ‘‘significant’’ differences or lack thereof, and so on). “ The editors also added that there is no requirement for any inferential statistical procedures, because the state of the art remains uncertain.

Certainly the journal has created a bold step and will add to more uncertainty. We realised the limitation of significance test, which was introduced by Ronald Fisher, but I think this is one step too far. Read also another article in Nature. Love to hear your thoughts.


The Mathematical Shape of Things to Come

An article in Quanta Magazine highlights the new Data Driven research. In pedometrics and digital soil mapping we dealt a lot with big data, and in many ways we draw conclusions and gain understanding on soil based on empirical relationships. Science writer Jennifer Oullette wrote: Today’s big data is noisy, unstructured, and dynamic rather than static. It may also be corrupted or incomplete. Researchers need new mathematical tools in order to glean useful information from the data sets. The article presented an example on topological data analysis (TDA) that reduce large, raw data sets of many dimensions to a compressed representation in lower dimensions without sacrificing the most relevant topological properties. Are we ready to use this kind of approach for large soil data such as hyperspectral imaging?


Upcoming Meetings

Global Soil Security Symposium, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, May 19-21 2015.

The 4th Global Workshop on Proximal Soil Sensing, Sensing Soil Conditions and Functions, Hang Zhou, China, May 12-15 2015.

Global Workshop on Digital Soil Morphometrics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, June 1-4, 2015.

Proximal Soil Sensing Session at the Joint meeting of International Union of Soil Science (IUSS), Canadian Society of Soil Science (CSSS) and Association québécoise de spécialistes en sciences du sol (AQSSS)l, July 5-10, 2015 at McGill University, Montréal, Québec, Canada.



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