Research – University of Copenhagen

CMEC > Research


The aim of CMEC is to elucidate biology’s “laws of nature” by focusing on the four main processes influencing life: the ori­gin and birth of species (speciation), the dispersal of species (movement), the persistence of species through interaction with other species (maintainance) and the disappearance of species (extinction).

This research can help society address two of the most pressing challenges of our time:

  1. How to combat the ongoing global mass extinction of species
  2. How to predict the effect of global climate change on biological diversity

Research themes

CMEC research is built up around 10 different themes. Synergies emerging from juxtaposition of the many competences represented at CMEC are cultivated by ensuring that every team member works in at least two different themes and that no two themes have exactly the same composition of personnel.

Macroecology & Macroevolution
Integrating macroecology and macroecolution to understand large-scale diversity patterns - with a focus on geographical ranges and mountains

Biogeography & Phylogenies
Using phylogenies to understand the influence of diversification on macroecological
and macroevolutionary patterns - with a focus on spiders and vertebrates

Phylogeography & Extinction
Combining genetics with climate and species distribution modeling to
understand past, current and future extinctions - with a focus on megafauna

Conservation & Biodiversity
Using macroecological and macroevolutionary knowledge and data to manage biodiversity and ecosystem ressources

Movement & Dispersal
Elucidation of long-distance movement of individuals to understand spatiotemporal distribution of species - with a focus on birds

Oceanography & Macroecology
Relating biological oceanographic processes to marine macroecological patterns - with a focus on phytoplankton

Marine populations and Macroecology
Integrating temporal and spatial patterns of population processes with species distributions - focusing on fishes

Mountains & Oceans
Integrating the terrestrial with the marine to under understand the global biodiversity hotspots in tropical mountains

Climate Change
How does climate as a principal factor affect distribution of life on Earth in past, today and in the future

Socioeconomics & Biodiversity
Applying environmental economics and decision theory to evaluate and design strategies to manage biodiversity and other ecosystem services