There is a great article by The Old Farmer's Almanac that mentions Paul Gautschi and the Back to Eden Gardening method. Although we believe the stage of adding wood chips is not "optional" we are very happy to see the reference from such a reputable farming and gardening resource! Here is the reference:
"An optional extra stage is to top the compost with wood chips (or other organic matter such as hay), as popularized by organic gardener Paul Gautschi in his ‘Back to Eden’ method. Add the wood chips about two inches deep, making sure not to mix it into the compost beneath. Then simply push aside the wood chips to plant directly into the compost. This top layer helps slow down evaporation and gradually feeds the soil below, reducing the need for additional fertilizers."
READ FULL ARTICLE HERE: https://www.almanac.com/video/no-dig-gardening-no-till-gardening