Symposium # 11: Urban Ecology: The Eastern and Western Perspectives.
The urban environment represents ecological systems that are most drastically transformed by human activities. While only a few per cent of the global population lived in cities in 1800's, urban environments accommodate nearly 50% of the world population today. In the United States, 74% of the population resided in urban areas in 1989 while in 2025, 80% are projected to live in urban areas. While they are arguably the most important habitats for human survival, urban ecosystems, after being long ignored, only recently have begun to receive much deserved attention from ecologists. However, urban ecology is new to North America ecologists in several respects, and it is important to learn how urban ecology has long been studied in Asia and Europe. Thus, the goal of this symposium is to bring together a group of leading urban ecologists from Asia, Europe, and USA to discuss the history, scope, and methodology of urban ecology. This symposium will highlight the major historical developments, different perspectives, and theories and principles that are shaped by different physical and cultural landscapes. This symposium will help facilitate communications among ecologists in the USA and other parts of the world, and should be of great interest to many ESA members who are working on or concerned with urban environment. The presentations and subsequent publications by this group of leading urban ecologists will help clarify several issues of the scope and methodology of urban ecology.