Forests play a number of essential roles at global scale, from maintaining biological diversity to mitigating climate change. However, forests around the world are being rapidly cleared to make space for food production, threatening their continued provision of ecosystem services. Preserving the contributions of forests to human and natural systems requires improved understanding of the socio-ecological dynamics that drive, and result from, forest loss. This research will develop the necessary interdisciplinary knowledge to project forest dynamics under future global change.
While research into natural and unmanaged forests is intensive, it usually adopts disciplinary perspectives that focus on, for instance, ecological dynamics, climate feedbacks or economic optimization of management practices. This precludes consideration of the interactions between human, ecological and climatic systems that will ultimately determine changes in the world’s forests. The formal investigation of these interactions, using interdisciplinary data and methods, is therefore a major and crucial step forward. This research will establish the first conceptual and computational representation of forests as coherent, dynamic socio-ecological systems within the Earth System.
Forest preservation is a major aim of international policy initiatives, including the ‘Paris Agreement’ for the mitigation of climate change. The ecosystem services provided by forests, both locally and globally, are of huge monetary and non-monetary value to society, and are the subjects of a wide array of different policies, laws, initiatives and campaigns. Identifying ways in which the continued provision of these services can be aligned with economic development and food provision is therefore of central societal importance.
Achievement of Paris climate goals unlikely due to time lags in the land system.
2019. Nature climate change. doi:10.1038/s41558-019-0400-5
Reviewing the evidence base for the effects of woodland expansion on biodiversity and ecosystem services in the United Kingdom.
2018. Forest ecology and management, 430, 366–379. doi:10.1016/j.foreco.2018.08.003
Contrasting effects of space and environment on functional and phylogenetic dissimilarity in a tropical forest.
2018. Journal of plant ecology, 12 (2), 314–326. doi:10.1093/jpe/rty026
Green Gold to Wild Woodlands; understanding stakeholder visions for woodland expansion in Scotland [in press].
2018. Landscape ecology. doi:10.1007/s10980-018-0674-4
Intra-specific relatedness, spatial clustering and reduced demographic performance in tropical rainforest trees.
2018. Ecology letters. doi:10.1111/ele.13086
Lack of phylogenetic signals within environmental niches of tropical tree species across life stages.
2017. Scientific reports, 7, 42007. doi:10.1038/srep42007
Snow damage to the canopy facilitates alien weed invasion in a subtropical montane primary forest in southwestern China.
2017. Forest ecology and management, 391, 275–281. doi:10.1016/j.foreco.2017.02.031
The effect of forest owner decision-making, climatic change and societal demands on land-use change and ecosystem service provision in Sweden.
2017. Ecosystem Services, 23, 174–208. doi:10.1016/j.ecoser.2016.12.003
The relative importance of subjective and structural factors for individual adaptation to climate change by forest owners in Sweden.
2017. Regional environmental change, 1–10. doi:10.1007/s10113-017-1218-1
The importance of socio-ecological system dynamics in understanding adaptation to global change in the forestry sector.
2017. Journal of environmental management, 196, 36–47. doi:10.1016/j.jenvman.2017.02.066
Climate change impact modelling needs to include cross-sectoral interactions.
2016. Nature climate change, 6 (9), 885–890. doi:10.1038/nclimate3039
Hotspots of uncertainty in land-use and land-cover change projections: a global-scale model comparison.
2016. Global change biology, 22 (12), 3967–3983. doi:10.1111/gcb.13337
Using the SWAT model to improve process descriptions and define hydrologic partitioning in South Korea.
2014. Hydrology and earth system sciences, 18 (2), 539–557. doi:10.5194/hess-18-539-2014