Recognition of Achievement for a Research Paper

Recognition of Achievement for a Research Paper is an award presented to the corresponding author of the most highly cited paper in the BES journals for the past 5 years.

The British Ecological Society has an international reputation for publishing high-quality ecological research. Annually it publishes many papers that go on to be highly cited in the scientific literature and this award has been introduced to acknowledge authors whose papers have been particularly well cited.

Journal of Ecology  

    Awarded to Dr Dario Fornara in 2014 for his paper
    Plant functional composition influences rates of
    soil carbon and nitrogen accumulation

    Co-authored with David Tilman (Journal of Ecology, 96: 314–322).

 In this paper the Fornara and Tilman demonstrate that plant functional complementarity is a key reason why higher plant diversity leads to greater soil C and N accumulation on agriculturally degraded soils. The results suggest the combination of key C4 grass–legume species may greatly increase ecosystem services such as soil C accumulation and biomass (biofuel) production in both high- and low-diversity N-limited grassland systems.

Dario Fornara is currently Principal Scientific Officer in the Sustainable Agri-Food Sciences Division of the Agri-Food & Biosciences Institute (AFBI), Belfast, UK. He is a former Lecturer in Terrestrial Ecology at the University of Ulster. Dr. Fornara was awarded his PhD in 2005 from the University of Pretoria in South Africa and has spent the last 12 years working in very different biomes from tropical forests in Central-America and sub-tropical savannas in Southern-Africa to temperate grasslands in Northern America and Europe. His research addresses how changes in plant species diversity and land use management could influence the biogeochemistry of grassland ecosystems and in particular the delivery of key ecosystem services such as soil carbon sequestration.


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