How do complex species interactions mediate plant community diversity? (2017–2019)
Species interactions are central to understanding biodiversity at local to regional scales. Most diversity models assume that direct competition captures all salient details of species interactions, while more complex species interactions are unimportant. This unsupported, pervasive assumption has major consequences for how diversity is predicted and explained. Combining field experiments on plant species¿ responses to climate and land use changes with a novel modelling framework, this study will increase the biological realism of coexistence and diversity models. Outcomes will provide an empirically-tested theoretical advancement in ecology that will greatly improve our ability to protect biodiversity under global environmental change.