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Section Membership

SWS sections allow members to network and promote activities that address wetland topics ranging from science to policy. The primary goal of the sections is to enhance the SWS annual meeting by organizing symposia and workshops.

See a topic that you have a passion for? Add to your membership today for a small fee!

We also encourage you to consider donating to a section in order to further promote the mission of the section. Donation links are provided under each section.



Our mission is to advance research and application on biogeochemical phenomena that regulate wetlands.

The Biogeochemistry Section was established in February 2008. The Wetland Biogeochemistry Symposium (WBS), first held at Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge in 1991, developed stronger ties to SWS in 2007, and is now an official activity of the SWS Biogeochemistry Section. The 12th WBS was held in Prague, Czech Republic, in July 2011.


The Biogeochemistry Section's goals are to:

  • Organize symposia on important developments in wetland biogeochemistry.
  • Propose and fund initiatives that advance wetland biogeochemistry research and education.
  • Encourage and support students engaged in wetland biogeochemistry research.
  • Interact with other sections to enhance inter-disciplinary research.


Current Officers
Chair Lisa Chambers, Ph.D., UCF 
Past-Chair  John White, Ph.D., LSU  

Related Links

USGS National Geochemical Survey 
European Soil Database 

US Trace Gas Network   

Duke Wetlands Center 
National Wetlands Research Center 
LSU Wetland Biogeochemistry Institute 

Donate to this section.   



The mission of the SWS Education Scetion is to promote wetland science education for students of all ages and for the general public.


  1. Provide professional development opportunities for teachers and instructors at annual and regional meetings of SWS through workshops and symposia;
  2. Encourage the development and dissemination of educational materials about wetlands that can be incorporated into curricula at all educational levels; and
  3. Recognize teachers and institutions who have made a significant contribution to improving the teaching of wetland science.


Current Officers
Chair Derek Faust, Ph.D., Clover Park Technical College 
Chair-Elect Darold Batzer, Ph.D.,  University of Georgia
Secretary Wei-Ta Fang, Ph.D., National Taiwan Normal University 
Treasurer Olivia Johnson, US Geological Survey 

Donate to this section.   

Global Change Ecology


Our mission is to advance research and application on Global Change Ecology that regulate wetlands.

The Global Change Ecology Section was established in February 2008.


Our goals are to:

  • Organize symposia on important developments in wetland Global Change Ecology.
  • Propose and fund initiatives that advance wetland Global Change Ecology research and education.
  • Encourage and support students engaged in wetland Global Change Ecology research.
  • Interact with other sections to enhance inter-disciplinary research.


Current Officers

Wei Wu, Ph.D., University of Southern Mississippi


Tracy Quirk, Ph.D., Louisiana State University

Sponsored Symposia

The section organizes special sessions, symposia or other events, particularly at the SWS Annual Meeting.

Donate to this section.   



The mission of the Peatlands Section is to advance research and applications related to peatlands. The section was established in 2008. Peatlands represent a major component of the terrestrial biosphere, covering about 3-4% of the land surface, and represent more than half of the world’s wetland area. The factors responsible for peatland formation and the physical, hydrological, biogeochemical, and biological processes for sustaining peatland ecosystems are quite different from those of non-peatland wetlands, which can lead to different methods and skill-sets required for their study and management. In addition, peatlands require specialized or tailor-made approaches to deal with environmental, economic and social management and conservation issues that are different from non-peatland wetlands. Given the importance of peatlands around the world, there is a need to provide opportunities for more peatland specialists to participate in SWS activities. The Peatlands Section also provides the means for the SWS to interact with its sister wetland societies that focus only on peatlands (i.e. International Peat Society, International Mire Conservation Group, Peatlands Research Group of the British Ecological Society).


Our goals are to:

  • Organizing symposia on important developments in peatland research.
  • Propose and fund initiatives that advance wetland peatland research and education.
  • Encourage and support students engaged in peatland research.
  • Interact with other sections to enhance inter-disciplinary research. 


Current Officers
Chair Bin Xu, Alberta Institute of Technology  (June 2020- June 2022) 
Past Chair Julie Talbot, Université de Montréal  

Donate to this section. 

Public Policy & Regulation


The vision of the SWS Public Policy & Regulation Section is to: 

  1. Facilitate interactions among wetland scientists who are experienced with or who are interested in public policy and regulation;
  2. Sponsor and develop symposia, workshops and other events related to wetland policy and regulation;
  3. Advise the SWS leadership (Executive Board, Board of Directors), chapters, and members dealing with public policy and regulatory issues;
  4. In consultation with the Executive Board, aid in the development and writing of SWS policy papers; and
  5. In consultation with the Executive Board, represent SWS in interactions with policy makers and regulators.


Current Officers
President & Chairman  John Lowenthal 
Secretary General  Robert Parker 
Treasurer Richard Chinn 

Donate to Public Policy and Regulations Section



The Convention on Wetlands, often referred to as the "Ramsar Convention", is an intergovernmental treaty that embodies the commitments of its member countries to maintain the ecological character of their Wetlands of International Importance and to plan for the "wise use", or sustainable use, of all of the wetlands in their territories. The Convention was established in the Iranian city of Ramsar (hence the name) in February 1971.

The Convention is the only global multilateral environmental agreement dedicated to a single ecosystem - wetlands. The mutually compatible objectives of the Convention and the Society of Wetland Scientists had resulted in the establishment of memoranda of cooperation since 1999 and holds the status as an Observer Organisation, however the advent of Sections within the Society provided an opportunity to foster stronger links between the two organizations in order to deliver mutual benefits. Therefore, the Ramsar Section was established in early 2010. The goals of the Section are to:

  • Organize symposia on important developments in Ramsar.
  • Propose and fund initiatives that advance Ramsar research and education.
  • Encourage and support students engaged in Ramsar research.
  • Interact with other sections to enhance inter-disciplinary research.

The Section, through it's Chair and members, maintains close links with various bodies of the Ramsar Convention. Members of the Section interact and support the work of Convention's scientific subsidiary body, the Scientific and Technical Review Panel (STRP), and regularly contribute to the work of the Convention. In return, the links with the Ramsar Convention provide opportunities to raise the international profile of the Society and for SWS members to contribute to global wetland conservation initiatives.

Ramsar Section Bylaws- Click HERE 

What is the State of the World’s Remaining Wetlands? SWS members’ help urgently needed!

Have you been undertaking research in a wetland? Are you restoring a wetland? Do you live near a wetland and have watched it change over the years? Have you been visiting a wetland over the years just to enjoy its wonderful nature? We are sure that most, or all, SWS members have such knowledge and information about a wetland – otherwise you wouldn’t be a SWS member! Learn more.

Your knowledge is really vital to the success of this survey. Go online, at: http://www.worldwetnet.org/about-us/world-wetlands-survey-2017. There the questionnaire can be filled in the language of your choice. Save your completed form, with the wetland name in the filename, and email it to: wli@wwt.org.uk. The deadline for completing the survey is 30 September 2017.

Student Research Grant 2016

The Ramsar Section of SWS is offering one $1000 Student Research Grant to graduate or undergraduate students conducting research in wetland science relevant to the implementation of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, including research on a Ramsar Site or Sites (Wetlands of International Importance) and who are enrolled in an accredited college or university in any part of the world. To learn more about the student research grant application, please visit the SWS Student Research Grants page

For more information about the Ramsar Convention see: www.ramsar.org and for Ramsar Sites see the Ramsar Sites Information Service on: rsis.ramsar.org


Current Officers
Chair Nicholas Davidson, Nick Davidson Environmental
Vice-Chair Matthew Simpson, 35percent Ltd 
Past-Chair Rob McInnes, RM Wetlands & Environment Ltd
Board Member  Siobhan Fennessy, Kenyon College
Board Member  Royal Gardner, Stetson University College of Law 

*New board will selected at the next Ramsar Convention's Conference of Contracting Parties currently scheduled for late autumn 2021.  

The Chair is elected by majority vote taken by written and/or electronic ballot of members of the Section. The Chair of the Section serves a term to coincide with the triennial cycle of the Ramsar Scientific and Technical Review Panel in order to support joint activities as specified in  the Memorandum of Cooperation 2011-2015 between Ramsar and SWS.

The Chair of the Section is also the SWS Representative to Ramsar and serves on the SWS Board.

The Section holds a formal business meeting at the Annual SWS meeting. This is open to both members of the Section as well as other interested parties who wish to find out more about the activities and objectives of the Section.


Ramsar Section business meeting,  30 May 2019

Section meeting minutes from the SWS Annual meeting in Baltimore are available HERE

Ramsar Section business meeting, 1 June 2016

Fifteen Ramsar Section members and observers met on 1 June 2016 during the Corpus Christi conference. Meeting notes are available here. If Ramsar Section members have any queries or comments, please send them to Section Chair Nick Davidson

Chair of Ramsar Section 

Following a recent call for nominations for the appointment of a new Chair of the Ramsar Section, the following two candidates emerged: Professor Nick Davidson (ex-Deputy Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention) and Dr Matt Simpson (Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, UK). Following discussions with the two candidates, it has been agreed that Nick will take over as Chair around the time of the Providence Meeting and Matt will serve as Vice-Chair. The exact date of change-over will tie in with completion of the next meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) of the Ramsar Convention which is due to be finished on 9 June 2015. The Chair will serve as representative of the Society to the Ramsar Convention. Both the Chair and the Vice-Chair will be in post for three years to match the triennial work cycle of the Convention. I look forward to working alongside Nick and Matt as past-Chair and pass on my warm congratulations and thanks to them. I am sure that you will all do the same.

State of the World's Wetlands and Their Services to People: A Compilation of Recent Analyses

The Ramsar Convention has a new resource that you'll want to read “State of the World's Wetlands and Their Services to People: A Compilation of Recent Analyses.”  The report is co-authored by SWS members Royal Gardner and Max Finlayson, and focuses on the thesis that as wetlands decline in quality and extent, so do the associated ecosystem services they provide to society. The Ramsar Convention is advising policy makers and contracting parties to take action to stop and reverse the degradation of wetlands and services to people. To continue to read click here.

Sponsored Symposia

2011 Prague, "Designation, Wise Use and Restoration of Ramsar Wetlands"

2012 Orlando, "The Ramsar Convention and SWS - Linking Science to International Policy"

2013 Duluth, "Wetland science in support of international wetland policy"

2014 Portland, "How does the Ramsar Convention respond to changing wetland baselines, thresholds and perception shifts in the Anthropocene?"

2015 Providence, "The implications for the Ramsar Convention of wetland status and trends" 

2016 Corpus Christi, "A heroic struggle against impossible odds? Helping the Ramsar Convention to assess wetland status and trends"
Find the symposium programme and presentation abstracts here

Related Links

Ramsar Convention:

Donate to this section.   



The mission of this section is to promote wetland science inclusion and equity for students, recent graduates, and young professionals (specifically aligned with SWS’ mission to promote and expanded opportunities in wetland science and practice for students and young professionals).

This section’s specific goals are to:

  1. Unify the efforts of the various student associations and increase student participation in the society’s activities.
  2. Ensure the recognition of the importance of cultivating future wetland professionals by encouraging the proliferation of student/young-professional programming and funding. 
  3. Provide opportunities for Section members to develop leadership skills through participation in their own section.


Chair  David Riera
Chair Elect  Steffanie Munguia
Secretary/Treasurer  Anjali Boyd 

 * Next election for Chair Elect  will be in Spring 2021.  Next election for Secretary/Treasuer  will be in Spring 2022.  

Donate to the Student Section


Wetland Restoration


Our mission is to advance research and application in restoration fields that regulate wetlands.

The vision of the SWS Wetland Restoration Section is to achieve: 

  1. The delivery of more successful wetland restoration projects through improved exchange of information and expertise among wetland practitioners, regulators, and researchers;
  2. Enhanced dissemination of information on wetland restoration, both within and beyond SWS;
  3. Improved identification and promotion of best practice in the design, implementation,and monitoring of wetland restoration projects;
  4. A positive contribution to the defining of terms, metrics, and measures of success in wetland restoration. 


A.  To encourage the sharing of scientific, theoretical, and technical data regarding wetland restoration between the applied, academic, and regulatory sectors of the wetland science arena. In this context, wetland restoration is defined in the broadest sense, including wetland reclamation, rehabilitation, and mitigation.

B.  To create a discussion forum for issues related to wetland restoration including projects driven by local issues, such as regulation in the United States through the Clean Water Act permitting process, or national/international perspectives, such as the delivery of the Convention on Biological Diversity's Aichi Biodiversity Targets via symposia organized at the annual meetings of the Society of Wetland Scientists, internet discussion, and/or other informal networking.

C.  To provide opportunities and support for students working on issues related to wetland restoration through granting of research awards and educational outreach at special symposia and poster sessions at annual SWS meetings.

D.  Through the advent of dedicated website for the section membership, provide a forum for the exchange of wetland restoration ideas and information. 

E.  Sponsor a symposium at the annual meeting which addresses topics related wetland restoration, including those associated with Clean Water Act permitting  in the United States as well as issues from other countries. The theme will vary annually, but the link to the wetland restoration agenda will remain consistent. A subcommittee of the Wetland Restoration Section will coordinate the annual theme, including the procurement of presentations.


Current Officers
Chair Andy Herb      
Past-Chair  Vacant 
Vice-Chair Kurt Kowalski
Secretary Teresa Doss
Treasurer Metthea Yepsen
Student At-Large Anna Puchkoff
Non-US At-Large Max Finlayson

Sponsored Symposia 

2019 - Closing the Permitting-Mitigation-Monitoring (PMM) Loop: A Focus on the Mid-Atlanic USA

Moderators: Andy Herb and Andy Baldwin   Full list of abstracts from this meeting 

2018 - Wetland Restoration and Creation: Case Studies and Lessons Learned 

Moderators: Ben LaPage and Robbyn Myers  Full list of abstracts from this meeting.

2017 - Restoration Meets Ramsar: Ensuring the Best from the Best for Internationally Important Wetlands from the Mountains to the Sea (Parts I and II)
Moderators: Andy Herb, Matthew Simpson and Nick Davidson
See a full list of abstracts from this meeting.

2016 - Wetland Restoration: Research Meets Practice (Parts I and II)
Moderator: Andy Herb
See a full list of abstracts from this meeting.

2015 - River & Stream Restorations: Implication for Riparian Wetland Function & Process
Moderator: Andy Herb
See a full list of abstracts from this meeting.

2014 - Wetland Restoration: Delivering Multiple Benefits and Recreating Lost Services
Moderator: Andy Herb
See a full list of abstracts from this meeting.

2013 - Wetland Restoration (Parts I and II)
Moderator: Andy Herb

You choose: What are the Benefits of Restoring Wetlands? - Robert McInnes

Landscape Level Identification of Wetland Functions and Restoration Opportunities: A Case Study from North Central Wisconsin - John Anderson

The Duck-Pensaukee Watershed Approach: Mapping Wetland Services, Meeting Watershed Needs - Thomas Bernthal

Wetland and Aquatic Resource Restoration in the Rockies - Some Practical Applications - Michael Claffey

Reestablishment of the Groundwater Flow System in a High-elevation Extremely-rich Fen - Brad Johnson

Riparian Wetland Degradation and Restoration: Cases from the Interior Pacific Northwest - Nate Hough-Snee

Restoration of the San Rafael River and Riparian Corridor in Southern Utah - Brian Laub

East Plum Creek Conservation Bank – A Case Study of Riparian Restoration Planning - Richard McEldowney

Wetland Restoration Section Poster Award

The Wetland Restoration Section Poster Award was started in 2017 to award students presenting posters, relating to restoration, at the SWS Annual Meeting. Each year, the section awards two, $250 awards. 

2017 - Adan Garza, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
          Gabriela Judd, Utah State University

Donate to this section.   


The Wildlife Section was established in February 2008.


Our goals are to:

  • Organize symposia on important developments in wetland wildlife.
  • Propose and fund initiatives that advance wetland wildlife research and education.
  • Encourage and support students engaged in wetland wildlife research.
  • Interact with other sections to enhance inter-disciplinary research.

Our primary activity is to organize symposia that provide an overview of relationships between wetland habitat dynamics and wildlife population dynamics at each SWS annual meeting.  The effects upon which we focus can flow both ways.  Examples include the effects of migratory snow geese on arctic wetlands as well as the effects of the spatial density of small wetlands on resident wildlife.  The effects upon which we focus also include effects that wildlife management has on wetland processes unrelated to wildlife such as the effects of Moist Soil Management on nutrient dynamics, and the effects of prescribed burning in coastal marshes on vertical accretion.  The symposia are broad enough to encompass a variety of questions focused on wetland-dependent wildlife such as: (a) are efforts to improve wetland habitat affecting survival, reproduction, and health of the wildlife using it; (b) is wetland habitat quantity and quality sufficient to support desired populations; (c) do we understand what a wetland-dependent species needs during a particular period of the life cycle or breeding / wintering area in terms of nutrition, or protection from human disturbance; (d), do we understand how natural cycles, perturbations (hurricanes, droughts), and global climate change impact long-term wetland-dependent wildlife populations and vital rates.  

The Wildlife Section also awards the “Best Student Oral Presentation Award Regarding Wildlife Population and Habitat Dynamics.”  Student presentations are eligible for the award when the presentation highlights relationships between wetland habitat dynamics and wildlife population dynamics.  These effects can flow both ways as noted above.  The award consists of $300. 


Current Officers


Andy Nyman, Louisina State University 




Luke Eggering, Parsons


Past Officers

Sammy King 


Jim Anderson


Andy Nyman


Rob McInnes                                          


Sammy King


Mike Anteau 


2020 Wildlife Section Student Research Grant  Recipients 
Raymond Looney, University of Vermont,  "Determining the ability of avian species to act as vectors for ranavirus transmission."  $1000 grant.  
Dustin Brewer, Central Michigan University, "A description of King Rail habitat use in the Laurentian Great Lakes region."   $1000 grant.  

Symposium News:

The SWS Wildlife Section hosted a symposium as part of the 2014 Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting (JASM) held in Portland, Oregon on May 18-23, 2014.  The symposium Wildlife Response to Restoration was held on Friday May 23.

Speakers and topics were as follows:

Strain, G. F.; Turk, P. J.; Anderson, J. T.. Functional Equivalency of Created and Natural Wetlands in the Central Appalachians: Reproductive Success, Call Phenology, and Diet Composition of Amphibians. (Abstract ID: 13285)

Arrigoni, J.; Gibbs, J. P.; Curatolo, J.. Do Constructed Vernal Pools Boost Amphibian Populations? The Effects of Pool Design and Landscape Context (Abstract ID: 14875)

Myers, J. E.. Mottled Duck Biology and Engineering (Abstract ID: 13251)

Stoll, S.; Breyer, P.; Früh, D.; Kail, J.; Lorenz, A. W.; Sundermann, A.; Haase, P.. Regional Habitat Quality and Metacommunity Structure are Crucial for the Success of River Restorations (Abstract ID: 13845)

Li, F.; Sundermann, A.; Stoll, S.; Haase, P.. Recolonization of Restored Rivers Depends on Dispersal Capacity of Benthic Invertebrates (Abstract Id: 14580)

Hagy, H. M.; Beverlin, J.; Horath, M. M.; Yetter, A. P.; Hine, C. S.; Smith, R. V.; Casper, A. N.. Floodplain Restoration and People Management

Nyman, J. A.. Building Terraces to Create Coastal Wetland Edge Habitat (Abstract Id: 14895)

Membership News:

Membership in the SWS Wildlife Section as of January 2014 stands at 183.    

The 2012 (Orlando, FL meeting) Wildlife Section Best Student Oral Presentation Award award went to Louise S. Venne at the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, University of Florida, for her presentation titled "Fire effects on wading bird foraging habitat and resources."  Her co-author was Peter C. Frederick.   The award consisted of $300.

Sponsored Symposia

2014: Wildlife Response to Restoration.  Portland, OR USA
2013: Effects of Changes in Sea-Level and Freshwater Inflow on Wildlife Use of Coastal Wetlands.  Duluth, MN USA
2011. Balancing the Needs of Wetland Wildlife and the Needs of Society.  Prague, The Czech Republic
2010. Integrating Wetland Processes and Wildlife Populations to Evaluate Climate Change.    Salt Lake City, NV USA
2009: Connections among Wetlands, Wildlife, and Agriculture.  Madison, WI USA 

Donate to this section.   

Women in Wetlands


Promote the success of women in the field of wetland science and management through mentoring, networking and education of both female and male members of SWS. 


Provide guidance, encouragement and support of female SWS members to improve their successful integration into and retention in the field of wetland science.

This section will engage in the following activities as they pertain to the mission of the Women in Wetlands Section: 

  1. Organize a symposium at the annual meeting that addresses topics related to the success of women wetland scientists, 
  2. Hold networking and educational opportunities that provide tools for success, and 
  3. Encourage and support students engaged in wetland research.


Current Officers
Chair  Dr. Carrie Reinhardt Adams 


 Dr.  Jennifer Karberg 


 Dr. Ariana Sutton-Grier


  • Election results are in!  
  • Many thanks to former past-chairs, especially Ellen Hartig, who served our section in a leadership role for the past three years!
  • If you would like to make a donation, follow the link at the bottom of this page.

Sponsored Symposia

2016: SWS Annual Meeting (Corpus Christi, TX):
WiW Breakfast, Keynote Speaker: Alani Taylor, USACE
"Navigating a Career in Wetlands: Strategies for Successful Transitions from Early to Middle to Late Career" (co-chaired by the SWS Graduate Student Representative)

2015: SWS Annual Meeting (Providence, RI):  
WiW Breakfast, Keynote Speaker: Ingeborg Hegemann, BSC Group (Please see the following links for resources mentioned in this talk: Why Women Still Can't Have it All, The Confidence Gap, The 24/7 Work Culture's Toll on Families and Gender Equality, Wheel of Life Example)
"Wetlands Career Development & Professional Branding" (co-chaired by the SWS Graduate Student Representative)

2014: Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting (Portland, OR):
"Beyond Graduate Research: Disseminating Scientific Knowledge" (co-chaired by the SWS Graduate Student Representative)

2013: SWS Annual Meeting (Duluth, MN):
WiW Breakfast, Keynote Speaker: Laura Jane Martin, Cornell University
"Marketability after Graduate School: Essential Skills for a Successful Professional Career in Wetland Science" (co-chaired by the SWS Graduate Student Representative)

2012: 9th INTECOL International Wetlands Conference (Orlando, FL):
WiW Breakfast, Keynote Speaker: Alesia Pierre-Louis, USGS, "Work/Life Balancing Act"
"Success Strategies for Graduate School and Beyond" (co-chaired by the SWS Graduate Student Representative)

Donate to this section.