Belowground ecosystem services in plant communities along elevational gradients in France and Mexico

Durée : 2017 - 2021
Programme : ANR PCRI
Portée : Internationale

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ECOPICS is a multidisciplinary project with two interlinked goals:

1) To answer fundamental research questions concerning soil ecosystem processes and links with plant communities in specific climates and land use types

2) To determine how the promotion of specific ecosystem services are beneficial (or not) to local anthropogenic communities and to soil quality. We define soil quality in ECOPICS in terms of carbon sequestration, macroporosity, faunal and microbial abundance / diversity.

To successfully reach these goals, we will examine two contrasting mountain biomes in temperate (France) and tropical (Mexico) climates and examine how a variety of soil, plant, soil microbial and faunal characteristics/processes are linked to the immediate climatic environment. Focusing on specific plant species and communities, data will enable us to test specific hypotheses with regard to soil carbon carbon sequestration and biodiversity. We aim to investigate the effect of a cultural service on both the local socio-economy and soil quality.


  • INECOL Mexico
  • University Veracruz, Mexico


  • Manon BOUNOUS Master 2 thesis 2019, Université de Montpellier & Montpellier SupAgro. Master Mention " Biodiversité, Ecologie, Evolution, B2E "The influence of plant root systems on soil erodibility and infiltration processes in mountain ecosystems'
  • Lucie Boegly Master thesis M1 2019 " Biodiversité, Ecologie, Evolution, B2E ‘Effets d’un gradient altitudinal sur la longueur du corps des collemboles.’
  • Quentin Gabriac M1 thesis 2019  Université de Montpellier & Montpellier SupAgro. Master Mention " Biodiversité, Ecologie, Evolution, B2E ‘Etude de la diversité taxonomique et fonctionnelle des communautés de lombrics le long d'un gradient altitudinal dans les Alpes françaises.’