Pellissier, Loïc, Prof. Dr.

Prof. Dr.  Loïc Pellissier

Prof. Dr. Loïc Pellissier

Professur für Landschaftsökologie

CHN  K 74.1 

Universitätstrasse 16

8092 Zürich


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Additional information

Curriculum Vitae

Loïc Pellissier has been Assistant Professor (with Tenure Track) of Landscape Ecology at the Institute of Terrestrial Ecosystems at ETH Zurich and at WSL since July 2015.

He was born in Martigny, Switzerland, in 1984.

Loïc Pellissier studied at the University of Lausanne and completed his PhD in 2012. He then led a postdoctoral research project at the Arctic Research Center (Roskilde), which is affiliated to Aarhus University in Denmark. From 2013 to 2015 he was research group leader at the University of Fribourg.

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Research Highlights

Loïc’s research is focused on understanding and modelling past and future landscape dynamic and its link to biodiversity. His research provides fundamental knowledge in ecology and evolution of landscape biodiversity patterns and uses this knowledge to improve sustainable management of natural resources. One of his research interests is species interactions. Species are not independent entities in an ecosystem but interact so that the extinction of one species may cascade across ecological networks. Loïc’s thesis demonstrated the strong association between plant and associated herbivores along environmental gradients in the Alps and used this knowledge to forecast how species assemblages may respond to climate change. He showed that high elevation plants experiencing lower levels of herbivory have evolved relaxed defence syndromes compared to their low-land living relatives. With increasing temperature under on-going climate change, it is expected that increased herbivores abundance at higher elevation might modify community composition. A long-term experimental set-up was recently initiated, including insects translocation to higher elevation in alpine grasslands to examine the consequence of increased herbivore abundance on high elevation plant species and communities. His research also investigates the impact of climate change on other ecosystems including the Arctic tundra and the marine realm. His current research objectives are to improve the methods to model biodiversity across landscapes but also to improve the acquisition and use of remote sensing technologies. Remote sensing and other monitoring tools provide the means to track the change in the landscape (land use or climate change). Forecasts of land-use and climate changes would allow improving the management of natural resources and the services provided to the human population.  

For information about Loïc’s current research, visit the Research link, as well as the webpages of individual group members.


Selected publications

Pellissier L., Leprieur F., Parravicini V., Litsios G., Olesen S., Wisz M.S, Kulbicky M., Cowman P., Bellwood D., Mouillot D. 2014. Quaternary coral reef refugia preserved fish diversity. Science, 344, 1016-1019

M.S. Wisz, Broennimann O., Grønkjær P., Hedeholm R. B., Rask Møller P. D. , Guisan A., Olsen S. M., Nielsen E. E., Pellissier L. 2015. Arctic warming will promote Atlantic-Pacific fish interchange. Nature Climate Change, in press.

Pellissier L., Ndiribe C., Dubuis A., Pradervand JN., Salamin N., Guisan A., Rasmann S. 2013. Turnover of plant lineages shapes herbivore phylogenetic beta diversity along ecological gradients. Ecology Letters, 16, 600-608.

Pellissier L., Anzini M., Maiorano L., Dubuis A., Pottier J., Vittoz P., Guisan A. 2013. Spatial predictions of land use transitions and associated threats to biodiversity: the case of forest regrowth in mountain grasslands. Applied Vegetation Science, 16, 227–236.


Loïc Pellissier
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