Robin Delsol

Centre for Biodiversity Theory and Modelling
Station d’Ecologie Théorique et Expérimentale du CNRS
09200 Moulis, France

Phone: +33 (0) 5 61 04 03 60

Research interests

I am generally interested in understanding climate change impacts on biodiversity and ecological consequences of global changes with a modeling approach.

Numerous theoretical and experimental studies have established that biodiversity loss has important consequences for the functioning of ecosystems and the services they provide to society. In particular, these studies have shown that biodiversity increases the stability of ecosystems, thus questioning classical ecological theory (Loreau et de Mazancourt, 2013). Recent work has laid the foundations of a new theory of ecosystem stability in agreement with empirical data (Wang et Loreau, 2014). Interestingly, this theory can be applied across multiple spatial scales, thereby addressing one of the major challenges of current ecology, i.e., moving beyond the study of local-scale phenomena to the study of large-scale ecological processes.

My PhD proposes to develop this new approach to ecosystem stability based on STability-Area Relationships (STARs). Like the classical Species-Area Relationships (SARs), STARs provide a potentially powerful tool to describe and predict the stability of ecosystems, the stability of the services they provide to society, and their relationships with biodiversity at multiple spatial scales. My thesis will include two complementary and closely interacting dimensions: first, a theoretical dimension based on mathematical modeling (using metacommunity models to extend the existing theory) and second, an empirical dimension based on the analysis of available data (to test the predictions of theoretical models using comparative analysis). This work can have practical implications for conservation by predicting the consequences of biodiversity loss, habitat loss and fragmentation on ecosystem functioning and stability.



  • Loreau M. and de Mazancourt C. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability: a synthesis of underlying mechanisms. Ecology letters, 16(s1):106–115, 2013. 
  • Wang S. and Loreau M. Ecosystem stability in space: alpha, beta and gamma variability. Ecology letters, 17(8):891–901, 2014


Summary CV

- Nov. 2015 - Oct. 2018: PhD in Theoretical Ecology and modelling at CBTM (CNRS SETE, Moulis). "Biodiversity and ecosystem stability in a changing world: a multi-scale approach". Supervisors : Michel Loreau and Bart Haegeman
- Jan. - July 2015: Intership at Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris."Analysis of species distribution models predictions using virtual species in the context of climate change". Co-supervisors: Boris Leroy (MNHN, UMR 7208 BOREA, Paris), Céline Bellard & Franck Courchamp (UPS, UMR 8079 ESE, Orsay)
- 2014 - 2015: Master’s degree in Ecology modeling (Université Rennes 1 - Agrocampus Ouest)
- 2012 - 2015: Master’s degree in Agricultural sciences (École Nationale Supérieure d'Agronomie de Nancy)
- 2010 - 2012: : BCPST Preparatory class (Toulouse)