The purpose of this meeting is to utilize various interdisciplinary approaches, such as evolutionary, geochemical, and ecological methods, to investigate the micropaleontological record and associated biogeochemical data. This will provide insights into the long-term dynamics of marine ecosystems, leading to the emergence of the field of 'micropaleoecology.' The meeting aims to combine published literature and datasets to create a comprehensive and detailed resource that considers temporal, spatial, and (ecological) community dimensions. The focus will be on analyzing complied abundance and presence/absence data to understand community dynamics across different trophic guilds. By applying network science techniques and other quantitative methods to the fossil record, the goal is to examine how marine communities responded to past climate changes, and these analyses will contribute to a better understanding and quantification of anthropogenic climate change.
Along with the creation of a very general dataset and research framework, this meeting will specifically concentrate on investigating ecosystem changes that align with a recently discovered major extinction event for sharks, where over 70% of shark morpho-diversity was lost. This time-period is intriguing because it coincides with a documented shift in planktonic foraminiferal morphological community specialization and a change in the global marine nitrogen cycle. By employing complex systems tools, the synthesized data from the workshop will provide further insights into the interactions between organisms and their environment, leading to an understanding of the 'ecological transition' that occurred in the marine system during this period and others.