The Ecosystems Laboratory, led by Prof. Yadvinder Malhi, seeks to understand how contemporary ecosystems function and how they may be affected by direct human pressures and global atmospheric change. This work spans the natural and social sciences, and the tools we employ in our research include:
Our interests are global, but we have particularly active research in tropical forests and savannas around the world, also in our local field site at Wytham Woods.
The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and the University of Oxford have joined forces in a major new scientific partnership to better understand how extreme weather events and human actions will both influence, and be influenced by, our changing climate. In particular, what effects do anthropogenic climate change and human activities have on the Amazon rainforest, and how can future damage be reduced?
The Global Ecosystem Monitoring network (GEM) is an international effort to measure and understand forest ecosystem functions and traits, and how these will respond to climate change.
The GEM team has collected extensive data on the carbon cycle of forests along the Andes to Amazon transect since 2009. In 2013, the GEM-TRAIT project will focus on the same plots along the elevational transect, with the overall goal to collect primary data on tree functional diversity.
As part of our global network of intensive plots and plant traits collection, we are working on a gradient in Ghana ranging from wet rainforest (Ankasa National Park) through semideciduous forest (Bobiri Experimental Forest) through to forest-savanna transition (Kogyae Wildlife Reserve). Along this gradient we are studying the relationships between drought, biodiversity and ecosystem function.
Three international long-term monitoring networks established to monitor the biomass and dynamics of Amazonian, African and SE Asian forests.
A project led by UCL to scan tropical forests using laser instrument to measure carbon and forest structure.
BIO-RED will improve understanding of the extent to which Brazilian forest & savanna are resisting climate extremes, the extent to which destruction is reversible, & the vulnerabilities of intact & modified vegetation to climate extremes.