With continued degradation of ecosystems, we need to know how to restore biodiversity, both for conservation and to ensure the provision of essential services provided by nature. To manage and restore diversity in human-modified systems, however, we need to understand the mechanisms that originally maintained biodiversity. The Ponisio lab studies the mechanisms operating in complex systems, specifically ecological communities, that underlie diversity maintenance.
The questions we are currently tackling are along these lines:
1) How does the demographic and evolutionary history of a species relate to its functional network role?
2) How do the interaction patterns at the individual-, community-, and species-level affect ecosystem function and resistance?
3) How to species role within one layer of a multi-layer network (e.g., plant-pollinator) affect their role in another layer (e.g., plant-pathogen)?
4) How can we design (restore) degraded communities to promote stability and evolutionary potential? (applying all the principles learned from the above)
Please see specific project pages for details.
We adhere (as much as possible) to the best practices in data science and reproducible science.