The program of TRACE 2018 centers around seven thematic sessions that are introduced and moderated by invited experts. Oral and poster contributions are to be submitted to one of the sessions, or to an additional ‘open’ session.

Exploring the tree-ring archive to study climate variability
Dr. Rob Wilson, University of St. Andrews, United Kingdom
This session aims to provide an overview of the different tree-ring variables and techniques used in dendroclimatology and how such data are paramount to understanding climate dynamics of the last millennium. Talks range from methodological advancements of tree ring-based climate reconstructions to specific case studies across a wide range of spatiotemporal and geographical scales. It is hoped that the breadth of talks will lead to fertile discussion in continuing the refinement of dendroclimatological methods and the continued exploration for deriving novel climatologically relevant information from the rings of trees.

Tree rings and knowledge of the human past
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Aoife Daly, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
An enormous amount of our tree-ring data comes from historical buildings and archaeological remains of constructions by humans, but increasingly, the human aspect of our discipline, dendroarchaeology, fills a shrinking proportion of our conferences. In this session, papers are invited that address the human story behind our research. For example: How was the timber resource exploited? What is the chronology of depletion of the timber resource in different regions? How does landscape and society (both areas with shortage and areas with abundance) affect the extent of timber transport in the past? How does the availability of different timber ‘quality’ influence past building traditions? What does YOUR dendrochronological research tell us about past people?

Methodological challenges in analyzing tree-ring data
Dr. Holger Gärtner, WSL, Switzerland
New tools and analyzing techniques set the base for integrating wood anatomical variables to a wide range of environmental research topics. Wood anatomy is now applied to analyze new parameters and develop new methodologies to understand the short- and long-term effects of specific environmental factors on the development of woody plants. In this session, we focus on the (further) development of devices (e.g., microtomes, dendrometers) and related methodological (sampling, sample preparation, image capturing) and analytical tools (image and data analyses, cell measurement), as well as their application in the full spectrum of tree-ring research.

Forests under change – tree-ring perspectives on global change impacts
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ute Sass-Klaassen, Wageningen University & Research, the Netherlands
Forests and shrublands worldwide are a big player if it comes to global water and carbon balances. How can dendrochronology contribute to actual issues such as forest productivity, carbon sequestration, biodiversity and genetic diversity?
Largely! – as it is one of the few approaches that allows to address dynamics in productivity and forest functioning. Any research related to dynamics in forest types worldwide, including upscaling via models or remote sensing approaches is welcome to contribute to an exciting session.

Inside wood – xylem anatomical features as indicators of change
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Marco Carrer, University of Padova, Italy
Looking closer at wood structure and appreciating how the variability in xylem features of trees and shrubs is related to plant functioning, growth, and environment can have similar effects as watching the night sky with naked eyes or with a telescope. The current possibility to span our wood anatomical analyses from a single year to centuries highlights its potential in terms of time resolution, temporal length and as new source of information. In this session, contributions are expected to present new perspectives and in-depth insights when entering inside wood, permitting a better understanding of plant performance and survival in a changing world.

From leaves and roots to the wood – explorations of tree physiological functioning in a changing world
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mary Gagen, Swansea University, United Kingdom
There is a strong and important connection between tree-ring records and the global water and carbon cycles delivered via stomatal control of conductance to carbon dioxide and water. Observed and modelled changes in plant physiological parameters have the capacity to impact both cycles and as such are an important topic in the study of global environmental change. We invite submissions of abstracts exploring plant physiological parameters and carbon-water relations and their linkages to broader physiological forcing.

Towards the extremes – growth responses and resilience of trees after climatic and environmental disturbance
Prof. Dr. Marieke van der Maaten-Theunissen, TU Dresden, Germany
Climate change involves the occurrence of more frequent and severe extreme climate events (droughts, heat waves, frosts). How do forests react to the stress caused by these climate extremes and how do they recover? Do these climate extremes make forests more vulnerable to projected climate warming and also less resilient? In this session, we will examine how climate extremes impact forests from a tree-ring perspective.