Linking forest trees to ecosystem functioning at a global scale
Forest trees cover over 1/3 of the land surface, and they are prominent determinants of global carbon cycling and the climate. Given their importance for the wellbeing of humans across the globe, it is critical that we understand the patterns in forest structure at a global scale, and how this determines the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. We use global datasets of forest inventory data and experimental data to understand the functional biogeography of forests (see 10,11), and its relationship to ecosystem functioning (see 12–14) at broad spatial scales. This research will also help us to understand how we can manage and restore forests in the fight against biodiversity loss, poverty and climate change (see 10,13).