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A basic question in vegetation science is – what ecological and evolutionary processes create the patterns that we observe? Considerable descriptive information about vegetation structure is available for many regions of the world. Major forces linked to particular vegetation patterns are also known: evolution (availability of regional species pools), dispersal (how organisms reach a location), abiotic (climatic, soil conditions) and biotic (competition,facilitation, parasitism, mutualism) factors. However, the question of how these mechanisms interact to shape vegetation patterns remains largely open. This question becomes increasingly relevant as novel ecosystems emerge, native species change their ranges and alien species arrive, establish and become dominant,having profound impacts on a range of ecosystem functions and ecosystem services. This is the context in which the 56th Annual Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science (IAVS), ‘Vegetation patterns and their underlying processes’, was held at the University of Tartu, Estonia, on 26–30 June 2013.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-387
Number of pages5
JournalNew Phytologist
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event56th Annual Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science - Tartu, Estonia
Duration: 26 Jun 201330 Jun 2013
Conference number: 56


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