Placing biodiversity in ecosystem models without getting lost in translation

Queiros, AM, Bruggeman, J, Stephens, N, Artioli, Y, Butenschon, M, Blackford, JC, Widdicombe, S, Allen, JI and Somerfield, PJ 2015 Placing biodiversity in ecosystem models without getting lost in translation. Journal of Sea Research.

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A key challenge to progressing our understanding of biodiversity’s role in the sustenance of ecosystem function is the extrapolation of the results of two decades of dedicated empirical research to regional, global and future landscapes. Ecosystem models provide a platform for this progression, potentially offering a holistic view of ecosystems where, guided by the mechanistic understanding of processes and their connection to the environment and biota, large-scale questions can be investigated. While the benefits of depicting biodiversity in such models are widely recognized, its application is limited by difficulties in the transfer of knowledge from small process oriented ecology into macro-scale modelling. Here, we build on previous work, breaking down key challenges of that knowledge transfer into a tangible framework, highlighting successful strategies that both modelling and ecology communities have developed to better interact with one another. We use a benthic and a pelagic case-study to illustrate how aspects of the links between biodiversity and ecosystem process have been depicted in marine ecosystem models (ERSEM and MIRO), from data, to conceptualisation and model development. We hope that this framework may help future interactions between biodiversity researchers and model developers by highlighting concrete solutions to common problems, and in this way contribute to the advance of the mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity in marine (and terrestrial) ecosystems.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Additional Keywords: BEF; biogeochemical; ecosystem function; environmental forcing; functional diversity; species richness; trait;
Subjects: Atmospheric Sciences
Computer Science
Data and Information
Ecology and Environment
Marine Sciences
Meteorology and Climatology
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > National Capability categories > Western Channel Observatory
Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Marine Life Support Systems (expired)
Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Marine System Modelling
Depositing User: Dr Ana Queiros
Date made live: 21 Oct 2014 16:07
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2023 12:31

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