Network Ecology

Interactions among species drive the ecological and evolutionary processes in ecological communities and are therefore key components of ecosystems. Networks provide a systematic way of describing biotic interactions of entire communities, where species are represented by nodes and interactions by links between nodes. Historically, most network research has focused on food webs and parasitoid webs. It is only in the last decade that network approaches have started to become widely applied to other types of ecological interactions such as mutualistic interactions.

Species interaction networks such as plant-pollinator or plant-herbivore networks share several general topological properties. Current research seeks to understand the forces that structure these topological properties. Also, we are interested in understanding how human induced environmental changes affect functional and topological properties of species interaction networks (Eva Knop).