Microbes (living organisms so small we cannot see them without magnification) play fundamental roles in every aspect of life on this planet. Recently, enormous effort has gone into characterizing the microbes in the outdoor world (from the bottom of the oceans to the upper reaches of the atmosphere) as well as those in our “inner world” (the microbes living in and on plants and animals including us). Alas, the space between the outdoors and our insides is somewhat neglected. Yet there are teeming hordes of microbes in the cars, houses, offices, water pipes, and other places that make up the “built environment” where most of us spend most of our time.
Thanks to continuing advances in DNA sequencing technology, and a recent initiative by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, this gap in knowledge is beginning to be addressed. This site – the microbiology of the Built Environment network (aka microBEnet) – is intended as a web hub for “connecting, communicating, collaborating, and curating” people and information related to this new field.
Browse through the menus above for other information or check out these direct links to some of our highlighted resources: the microBEnet blog, Simple Guides, LinkedIn Group, Full List of Sloan Grants, Curated Reference Collection, Facebook Page.