Community composition and tipping points across Europe
WP4 will investigate changes in the composition of species assemblages, which might lead to radical changes in the functioning of communities and ecosystems, i.e. biodiversity tipping points.
Evaluate potential future shifts in the functional composition of species assemblages throughout Europe
Identify species assemblages that are at risk of reaching tipping points.
Although species responses to global change are expected to be largely idiosyncratic, species responses will be influenced by, and have influence on, other species to varying degrees. Consequently, communities and ecosystems in which global change is driving turnover in composition may reach a ‘tipping’ point, at which an abrupt and radical shift occurs in how the system functions. Evaluating the potential for such events poses a considerable challenge. Using predictions form WP1 and 2 as a basis, we will apply network and community theories to identify EU regions in which the identity and functional characteristics of the incumbent species assemblage might change to such a degree that a tipping point occurs.