Title: A novel comparative research platform designed to determine the functional significance of tree species diversity in European forests
Authors: Baeten, Lander ×
Verheyen, Kris
Wirth, Christian
Bruelheide, Helge
Bussotti, Filippo
Finer, Leena
Jaroszewicz, Bogdan
Selvi, Federico
Valladaresh, Fernando
Allan, Eric
Ampoorter, Evy
Auge, Harald
Avacariei, Daniel
Barbaro, Luc
Barnoaiea, Ionu
Bastias, Cristina C
Bauhus, Jurgen
Beinhoff, Carsten
Benavides, Raquel
Benneter, Adam
Berger, Sigrid
Berthold, Felix
Boberg, Johanna
Bonal, Damien
Braggernann, Wolfgang
Carnol, Monique
Castagneyrol, Bastien
Charbonnier, Yohan
Checko, Ewa
Coomess, David
Coppi, Andrea
Dalmaris, Eleftheria
Danila, Gabriel
Dawud, Seid M
de Vries, Wim
De Wandeler, Hans
Deconchat, Marc
Domisch, Timo
Duduman, Gabriel
Fischer, Markus
Fotelli, Mariangela
Gessler, Arthur
Gimeno, Teresa E
Granier, Andre
Grossiord, Charlotte
Guyot, Virginie
Hantsch, Lydia
Haettenschwiler, Stephan
Hector, Andy
Hermy, Martin
Holland, Vera
Jactel, Herve
Joly, Francois-Xavier
Jucker, Tommaso
Kolb, Simon
Koricheva, Julia
Lexer, Manfred J
Liebergesell, Mario
Milligan, Harriet
Mueller, Sandra
Muys, Bart
Nguyen, Diem
Nichiforel, Liviu
Pollastrini, Martina
Proulx, Raphael
Rabasa, Sonia
Radoglou, Kalliopi
Ratcliffe, Sophia
Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten
Seiferling, Ian
Stenlid, Jan
Vesterdal, Lars
von Wilpert, Klaus
Zavala, Miguel A
Zielinski, Dawid
Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael #
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: G. Fischer Verlag
Series Title: Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics vol:15 issue:5 pages:281-291
Abstract: One of the current advances in functional biodiversity research is the move away from short-lived test systems towards the exploration of diversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in structurally more complex ecosystems. In forests, assumptions about the functional significance of tree species diversity have only recently produced a new generation of research on ecosystem processes and services. Novel experimental designs have now replaced traditional forestry trials, but these comparatively young experimental plots suffer from specific difficulties that are mainly related to the tree size and longevity. Tree species diversity experiments therefore need to be complemented with comparative observational studies in existing forests. Here we present the design and implementation of a new network of forest plots along tree species diversity gradients in six major European forest types: the FunDivEUROPE Exploratory Platform. Based on a review of the deficiencies of existing observational approaches and of unresolved research questions and hypotheses, we discuss the fundamental criteria that shaped the design of our platform. Key features include the extent of the species diversity gradient with mixtures up to five species, strict avoidance of a dilution gradient, special attention to community evenness and minimal covariation with other environmental factors. The new European research platform permits the most comprehensive assessment of tree species diversity effects on forest ecosystem functioning to date since it offers a common set of research plots to groups of researchers from very different disciplines and uses the same methodological approach in contrasting forest types along an extensive environmental gradient. (C) 2013 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
ISSN: 1433-8319
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Division Forest, Nature and Landscape Research
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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