center for synthesis
and analysis of biodiversity

A centre created and developed by the FRB
Predicting community resilience to invasions from diversity and network structure.


Principal Investigator: Patrice David (CEFE (CNRS), Montpellier), François Massol (EEP (CNRS), Lille)

Post Doctorates: Grégory MOLLOT and Jelena Pantel (CEFE (CNRS), Montpellier)

12 participating institutions: CEFE (CNRS), Montpellier, France ; EEP (CNRS), Lille, France ; ISA (INRA), Sophia-Antipolis, France ; iEES (UPMC, CNRS), Paris, France ; Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA ; Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada ; CBGP (IRD, INRA), Montpellier, France ; CARRTEL (INRA), Thonon-les-Bains, France ; LBBE (CNRS), Lyon, France ; BGPI (Cirad), Montpellier, France ; CATIE / Cirad, Costa Rica ; SCBPA (Cirad), Le Lamentin, France; University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand.


Understanding properties of food webs*, such as their topology or stability, and the rules underlying food web structure, has been a key issue in ecology for now more than half a century. Because obtaining data on food webs has long been a hard task in itself, this research field has progressed slowly, and its dynamical aspects have seldom been empirically considered. However, technical advances, like next generation sequencing or the possibility of retrieving past ecosystems in sediment cores, have paved the way for massive data and the analysis of time series on food webs, while new models allow better predictions about food web dynamics.

Making use of such existing data sets, this working group will aim at assessing the effects of biological invasions on food web topology, the fluxes of energy and nutrients throughout the network, and its ultimate effects on biodiversity. The working group will provide an integrative view on this topic, simultaneously tackling empirical, theoretical and applied aspects of biological invasions in food webs. Obvious applications will arise both from the numerous transports of invasive species and from the reshuffling of natural communities that is expected under global change scenarios. The working group comprises theoreticians and empiricists, biological invasion specialists as well as food web and host-parasite network experts, and will benefit from existing experience in the field of ecoinformatics and massive data management in ecology.

This project is co-financed by TOTAL

total impot societes


About the project in English



The story of the project


A presentation by François Massol to TOTAL on the 7th November 2017 summarises the work accomplished during the project.