Maurizio Mencuccini

Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

BSc degree in Forest Science at University of Firenze (Italy, 1992). Research Associate at Istituto Sperimentale per la Selvicoltura (Italy, 1992). PhD in plant environmental biology at the University of Firenze (Italy, 1993-1995). Postdoc at Boyce Thompson at Cornell University (USA, 1995-1997). Lecturer, senior lecturer, reader, then Professor of Forest Science at Edinburgh University (UK, 1997-2016).

Ranked as a Highly Cited Researcher (top 1% by citations) in 2018 in the field of Plant & Animal Science by Clarivate Analytics.

Research interests

I work at the frontier between biological and environmental sciences, interfacing with global change. My major contributions to current debates have been in the study of forest dynamics, particularly carbon and water cycles. I worked in Boreal, temperate, tropical and Mediterranean forests in Europe, N and S America, Australia and Africa. I authored >180 peer-reviewed papers. I am very involved in international debates concerning how longer and more intense droughts, as a consequence of climate change, can accelerate tree mortality. I also work closely with the forestry sector on a range of themes including growth and carbon sequestration by forests using modelling, data assimilation and remote sensing. I supervised >40 scientists, of whom >20 are still active in science (in senior academic positions or universities). I advised the Kenyan government on ecosystem payment schemes. I spoke at several high-profile conferences.

Selected publications

- Eller CB, Rowland L, Oliveira RS, Bittencourt PRL, Barros FV, da Costa ACL, Meir P, Friend AD, Mencuccini M, Sitch S & Cox P 2018, 'Modelling tropical forest responses to drought and El Nino with a stomatal optimization model based on xylem hydraulics', Philosophical Transactions Of The Royal Society B-biological Sciences, 373, 1760, 20170315.

- Nate McDowell et al. 2018, 'Drivers and mechanisms of tree mortality in moist tropical forests', New Phytologist, Volume 219, Issue 3, Pages 851-869.

- Da Costa ACL, Rowland L, Oliveira RS, Oliveira AAR, Binks O, Salmon Y, Vasconcelos SS, Junior JAS, Ferreira LV, Mencuccini M & Meir P 2018, 'Stand dynamics modulates water cycling and mortality risk in droughted tropical forest', Global Change Biology, 24, 1, 249-258.

- Helge Bruelheide et al. 2018, 'Global trait–environment relationships of plant communities', Nature Ecology & Evolution, volume 2, pages 1906-1917.

Selected research activities

- Continued involvement in five funded grants (UK NERC, Australian ARC, Spanish Ministerio)

- Led proposal writing for two grant proposals (ERC and H2020)

- Chief Editor, Editor or sub-Editor of seven international peer-reviewed journals

- President or member of selection committees in Italy and UK

- Examiner of two PhD thesis (Cordoba, Spain and Leeds, UK)

- 14 peer-reviewed papers published in 2018

- Fieldwork in the Australian tropics