Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa
Campo Grande, Bloco C2, 6º Piso, Sala 11, 1749-016 Lisboa, Portugal

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Ecology of Environmental Change - eChanges

Laura Concostrina Zubiri

External Collaborator

I received a Ph.D. in Natural Resource Conservation from Rey Juan Carlos University (Madrid, Spain) in 2012 and I am currently a Marie Curie Post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Changes (cE3c) - Universidade de Lisboa (Portugal). I have six years of post-graduate research and more than two years of post-doctoral experience in community, functional and applied ecology. My research is focused cryptogamic communities (lichens, bryophytes) and other soil microorganisms (e.g. soil cyanobacteria) and their role in ecosystem structure and functioning along environmental gradients. I have studied drylands worldwide collaborating in several national and international projects on desertification, global change, ecological fluxes and ecological restoration.

Currently, I am working in Cristina Branquinho’s research team Ecology of the Environmental Change (e-Change) leading the Marie Curie project “Functional diversity of Biocrusts: towards ecosystem services quantification in drylands” (2014-2016). This project is aimed at understanding the role of functional diversity of soil lichen, moss and cyanobacteria communities in ecosystem functioning and services in drylands. This project has led in a large collaboration network including research teams from U.S.A (M. Bowker, North Arizona University), Australia (D. Eldridge, University of New South Wales) and China (Y. Zhao, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation).


My research interests are focused on:

1. Community and Ecosystem Ecology: to understand how communities respond to changes in abiotic and biotic conditions such as climate gradients, disturbance-recovery processes and habitat structure, from local to regional scale.

2. Functional Diversity: to measure functional diversity, evaluate its effects on ecosystem processes and quantify its contribution to ecosystem services.

3. Drylands and Biological soil crusts: to understand and model ecosystem dynamics from hiper-arid to dry sub-humid lands using Biological Soil Crusts (terricolous lichens, bryophytes, cyanobacteria) as a model system.


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