Some Biogeographers, Evolutionists and Ecologists:
Chrono-Biographical Sketches

Sukachev, Vladimir Nikolaevich (Russia 1880-1967)
botany, forestry, phytogeography

Sukachev's long career turned on forest ecology, but he brought to this study an extensive knowledge of plant systematics, experimental technique, genetics, evolutionary biology, and geography. Effective as both a theoretical and applied thinker, he is best known as the founder of biogeocenology, the Russian equivalent of ecosystems studies. Terms such as biocoenosis, phytocoenosis and phytocoenology, and phytogeocoenology, still commonly used in the Russian literature, originate with his work. Among his many interests were dendrology, plant systematics, experimental natural selection, geobotany, grassland and swamp environments, and paleobotany and stratigraphy. Sukachev's forward-looking views came into conflict twice with the Lamarckian views of T.D. Lysenko--first, during the Stalin years, and later when Premier Khrushchev took Lysenko's side in the late 1950s as the latter came under increasing criticism. Sukachev was demoted and his influence suppressed in these later years of his life.

Life Chronology

--born in Aleksandrovka, Kharkov Province, Russia, on 26 May (7 June) 1880.
--1902: graduates from the St. Petersburg Forestry Institute
--1915: a founding member of the Russian Botanical Society
--1919-1941: professor at the Forestry Institute, in the dendrology and plant systematics subdepartment
--1919-1925: professor at the Geography Institute
--1920: made a corresponding member of the the Academy of Sciences of the USSR
--1924-1933: professor at the Botanical Garden
--1925-1941: professor at Leningrad University
--1941-1943: professor at the Urals Forestry Institute in Sverdlovsk
--1943: made Academician of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR
--1944: moves to Moscow and organizes the Institute of Forestry there; serves as director until 1959
--1944-1948: professor at the Moscow Timber Technology Institute
--1946-1953: professor at Moscow State University
--1946-1958: editor of Botanicheskiy Zhurnal
--1946-1963: president of the All-Russian Botanical Society
--1948-1967: editor of the Bulletin of the Moscow Society of Naturalists
--1955-1967: president of the Moscow Society of Naturalists
--1965: earns the "Hero of Socialist Labor" award in 1965
--dies at Moscow, Russia, on 9 February 1967.
--1968: his Fundamentals of Forest Biogeocoenology published posthumously

For Additional Information, See:

--The Soviet Union: A Biographical Dictionary (1990).
--Great Soviet Encyclopedia, Vol. 25 (1980).
--Taxonomic Literature, Vol. 6 (1986).
--Ecology, Vol. 49(6) (1968): 1216-1217.
--Russian Journal of Ecology, Vol. 25(4) (1994): 229-233.

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Copyright 2005 by Charles H. Smith. All rights reserved.

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