Associate professor Cal State Northridge, United States
Recent decades have led to an appreciation of how evolution can affect ecological processes. Microbial communities can evolve quickly, and in doing so, alter the ecological effects they have on plant fitness. In turn, plant trait evolution can alter the ecology of microbial communities, resulting in eco-evolutionary feedbacks that may ultimately affect soil carbon dynamics. Climate change is likely to alter successional trajectories in plant communities, but the extent to which this occurs will depend on ecological plant-soil feedbacks as well as feedbacks between ecological and evolutionary processes that may speed up or slow down successional changes.