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Welcome to the Ecology lab at the University of Konstanz

We do basic and applied research in plant ecology. Our research is guided by the basic questions of how phenotypic variation in functional traits is shaped by environmental and genetic variation, and how these traits and environmental factors determine the decline and spread of species. To answer these questions, we use a broad range of methods including data-base studies, meta-analysis of published studies, and experimental studies in the greenhouse, garden and field. We teach courses in general ecology and plant ecology.




News   +++  News  +++  News  +++  News  +++  News


  • 15 February 2017: Seebens et al. on "No saturation in the accumulation of alien species worldwide" has been published in Nature Communications. For a press release text, click here.
  • 2 February 2017: Our Klibikom project will contribute to more native plantings in the city of Radolfzell. See article in the Südkurier.
  • 1 February 2017: We welcome our new secretary, Christa, on her first working day.
  • 30 January 2017: Judy Simon will join our group with a Heisenberg fellowship. 
  • 30 January 2017: Elisabeth had her last working day before starting her well deserved retirement. We will miss her.
  • 28 January 2017: Mark received the prestigious Elisabeth Rehn Best Boss Award.
  • 23 January 2017: Mialy got a DFG grant!!!
  • 23 January 2017: We congratulate Katharina for giving birth to a son!!!
  • 20 January 2017: Mialy won the best-paper award of our department. Congratulations!
  • 4 January 2017: Madliger et al. on "Conservation physiology and the quest for a "good" Anthropocene" has been accepted for publication in Conservation Physiology
  • 20 December 2016: Liu & van Kleunen on "Responses of common and rare aliens and natives to nutrient availability and fluctuations therein" got accepted for publication in Journal of Ecology.
  • 9 December 2016: Gregor Müller did a great job defending his PhD thesis. Well done and congratulations!
  • 7 December 2016: We are seeking a talented student to fill a PhD position in an exciting new project on root traits and functional diversity. For details, click here.
  • 6 December 2016: We are happy that Dominika Kundel will join our group as an external PhD student, working at the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) in Frick, Switzerland. She will be working in a project on effects of drought on soil organisms and crops in agricultural fields. 
  • 1 December 2016: We are seeking talented students to fill a PhD position in our group as part of the new Research Training Group R3. For details, click here.
  • 24 November 2016: We congratulate Dominika Kundel for winning two prizes (Deutsche Botanische Gesellschaft and Verein der Ehemaligen der Universität Konstanz) for her Master thesis, and we welcome her in our group as a new external PhD student, working at the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL, Switzerland).
  • 11 November 2016: The German Science Foundation has decided to fund the graduate school R3 - Responses to biotic and abiotic changes, Resilience and Reversibility of lake ecosystems.
  • 4 November 2016: Carleial et al. on "Small reductions in corolla size and pollen:ovule ratio, but no changes in flower shape in selfing populations of the North American Arabidopsis lyrata" got accepted in Oecologia.
  • 28 October 2016: Razanajatovo et al. on "Plants capable of selfing are more likely to become naturalized" has appeared online in Nature Communications. For a press release text, click here.
  • 4 October 2016: Zhijie Zhang has joined our lab as a PhD student.
  • 21 September 2016: The GloNAF project website ( has been launched.
  • 16 August 2016: Maurel et al. on "Introduction bias affects relationships between characteristics and naturalization success of ornamental alien plants" got accepted in Global Ecology and Biogeography.
  • 26 July 2016: Dullinger et al. on "Climate change will increase naturalization risk from garden plants in Europe" is in press for Global Ecology and Biogeography.
  • 15 July 2016: Ning et al. on "Allelopathy of a native grassland community as a potential mechanism of resistance against invasion by introduced plants" got accepted for publication in Biological Invasions.
  • 14 July 2016: We congratulate Yan and Yanjie with the birth of Qiran.
  • 6 July 2016: Li et al. on "Latitudinal and longitudinal clines of phenotypic plasticity in the invasive herb Solidago canadensis in China" got accepted for publication in Oecologia.
  • 5 July 2016: Liu et al. on "Does greater specific-leaf-area plasticity help plants to maintain a high performance when shaded?" got accepted for publication in Annals of Botany.
  • 5 July 2016: Feng et al. on "Introduction history, climatic suitability, native range size, species traits and their interactions explain establishment of Chinese woody species in Europe" got accepted for publication in Global Ecology and Biogeography.
  • 1 July 2016: The GloNAF database got highlighted in the Infoporn section of the April issue of Wired Magazine.
  • 27 June 2016: A special issue resulting from the EMAPI 2015 meeting in Hawaii has been published in Neobiota
  • 9 May 2016: Sasha Kosanic has joined our lab as a postdoc funded by a bridging fellowship of the university's Zukunftskolleg.
  • 3 May 2016: Müller et al. on "Alien and native plant establishment in grassland communities is more strongly affected by disturbance than above- and below-ground enemies" is in press in Journal of Ecology.
  • 22 April 2016: The Südkurier reports on Katharina's results of the Klibikom project. 
  • 12 April 2016: Sedlacek et al. on "Evolutionary potential in the Alpine: trait heritabilities and performance variation of the dwarf willow Salix herbacea from different elevations and microhabitats" is in press in Ecology and Evolution.
  • 28 March 2016: Mark has 3 accepted papers in a row in Journal of Ecology.
  • 8 March 2016: Feng  & van Kleunen  on "Phylogenetic and functional mechanisms of direct and indirect interactions among alien and native plants" has been accepted by Journal of Ecology.
  • 8 March 2016: Wheeler et al. on "The snow and the willows: Earlier spring snowmelt reduces performance in the low-lying alpine shrub Salix herbacea" has been accepted by Journal of Ecology.
  • 1 March 2016: McCormack et al. on "Key impacts of climate engineering on biodiversity and ecosystems, with priorities for future research"  is in press now in Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences.
  • 16 February 2016: Oduor et al. on "Invasive plant species are locally adapted just as frequently and at least as strongly as native plant species" is now in press in Journal of Ecology.
  • 12 February 2016: Mialy Razanajatovo successfully defended her PhD thesis. Congratulations Mialy!
  • 5 January 2016: Razanajatovo & van Kleunen on "Non-invasive naturalized alien plants were not more pollen limited than invasive aliens and natives in a common garden" got accepted for publication in Functional Ecology.
  • 1 January 2016: Wayne Dawson has left us for Durham. Good luck!
  • 23 December 2015: Müller et al. on "Commonness and rarity of alien and native plant species - The roles of intraspecific competition and plant-soil feedback" got accepted for publication in Oikos.