The impact of climate change on species ranges and composition of plant communities in temperate, boreal and alpine regions.  



Shifts in species ranges and changes in species abundances and community composition will be related to changes in climate and other driving factors, such as changes in land-use and grazing intensity. We will deal with two types of data: one where exact sample relocation is possible (most of the forest data, and summit data), and data where exact relocation is not possible (phytosociological data along altitudinal gradients). The two types of data will be handled in different ways. For the data where exact sample locations can be refound we will make a direct comparison of species occurrence and species composition. The combined data-set of the original data and the resampled data will be subjected to ordination to estimate changes in species composition. Change in occurrence and composition will subsequently be related to plot-specific environmental variables. The estimated changes in indicator values will subsequently be interpreted in terms of changes in potential drivers (e.g. temperature, rainfall, grazing and browsing by domesticated and free-ranging animals, and soil conditions, if available in the original data-set). To account for any spatial dependencies and non-normality, constrained permutation tests will be performed to evaluate the statistical significance of the observed differences.

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