Caroline M. Plugge and coworkers published as PNAS opinion paper arguing that individual-based observations should be much more closely coupled with individual-based modeling, leading to microbial individual-based ecology (µIBE).
This work has arisen from the workshop Individual-Based Ecology of Microbes: Observations and Modeling, held at the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) in June 2011, sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture through NSF Award #EF-0832858, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
The article can be found here.
Ulrich Kreft*, Caroline M. Plugge*, Volker Grimm, Clara Prats, Johan H. J. Leveau, Thomas Banitz, Stephen Baines, James Clark, Alexandra Ros, Isaac Klapper, Christopher J. Topping, Anthony J. Field, Andrew Schuler, Elena Litchman, Ferdi L. Hellweger (2013). Mighty small: Observing and modeling individual microbes becomes big science. PNAS, in press (update November 5, 2013)