The review process for this project represents one of the most in-depth scientific critiques of literature for purposes of regional environmental outreach. Our review process is grounded on four guiding principles adapted from leading international authorities on ecosystem assessment and climate change research (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). The four guiding principles of the Eastern redcedar Science Literacy Project are as follows:
- Conduct an in-depth review of the scientific literature relating to eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana L.). Search terms in addition to juniper, juniperus virginiana, eastern redcedar, or red cedar included but were not limited to: range, distribution, phylogeny, genus, historical abundance, precipitation, temperature, elevation, soil, aspect, slope, generalist, phenotype, biology, form, growth, tree ring, bark, crown, root, disease, insect, reproduction, age, dispersal, germination, seasonality, pollination, ecophysiology, light, moisture, ecology, succession, site characteristics, site requirement, tolerance to fire, fire, uses, advantageous qualities, product, market, windbreak, overstory-understory, under canopy, below canopy, invasion, invasive species, native invasive, rate, cause of invasion, invasive properties, consequence of invasion, consequence, impact, animal diversity, grassland diversity, forest diversity, plant diversity, herbaceous production, biomass production, forage production, livestock production, wildfire, water, carbon, litter, school funding, wildlife, diversity, bird, grassland bird, woodland bird, small mammal, beetle, reptile, herpetofauna, soil moisture, streamflow, pH, soil horizon, removal, management, and control.
- Prioritize and select scientific literature that represent the scientific consensus on eastern redcedar spread and impacts and provide the most overwhelming support for each fact. The scientific consensus emerged as a result of the in-depth review of scientific literature.
- Ensure an objective, open, and transparent review of the literature and the highest quality of information presented in this project by seeking the participation of multiple external reviewers that are experts on eastern redcedar spread and impacts (see Second Review).
- Ensure this project remains up-to-date regarding new research findings by: 1) Conducting a quarterly review of newly published scientific literature, and 2) Providing a pathway for research to be added to this project via the Send Your Science and News page on this site. To insure the highest quality of information communicated by this project, information from new or submitted research findings that is not currently on the site will undergo an additional round of peer review by a panel of external scientists before being added to the site.