Morel, Alexandra


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Personal profile


I am an ecosystem scientist interested in the interface of ecology and economic development, particularly understanding the ecological processes supporting agricultural commodity production and how it may be impacted by landscape, management and climate drivers. I have used satellite imagery to scale-up field data to landscape and regional scales. I am also interested in understanding the ecological underpinnings of forest resilience using a combination of paleo- and contemporary ecological methods.

Research interests

My research is primarily interdisciplinary and my most recent work has focused on smallholder agroforestry systems in Ethiopia and Ghana. I have worked on questions of resilience and resistance of managed systems to climate shocks, how net primary productivity (NPP) varies between natural and managed systems and the role of biodiversity in supporting these processes. I am interested in collaborations and/or postgraduate projects relating, but not limited, to the following topics:

  • Landscape drivers of agricultural productivity
  • Nutrient cycling in natural and managed systems
  • Using functional traits to understand ecosystem resilience
  • Linking ecological understanding of rural livelihoods with urban migration
  • Combining remote sensing analysis and ecological modelling to assess landscape-level responses to climate anomalies
  • Developing long-term, community-led ecological monitoring programmes
  • Combining tropical dendrochronology records with contemporary forest productivity measures

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land


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  • Aboveground forest biomass varies across continents, ecological zones and successional stages: Refined IPCC default values for tropical and subtropical forests

    Rozendaal, D. M. A., Requena Suarez, D., De Sy, V., Avitabile, V., Carter, S., Adou Yao, C. Y., Alvarez-Davila, E., Anderson-Teixeira, K., Araujo-Murakami, A., Arroyo, L., Barca, B., Baker, T. R., Birigazzi, L., Bongers, F., Branthomme, A., Brienen, R. J. W., Carreiras, J. M. B., Cazzolla Gatti, R., Cook-Patton, S. C., Decuyper, M., & 37 othersDevries, B., Espejo, A. B., Feldpausch, T. R., Fox, J., G P Gamarra, J., Griscom, B. W., Harris, N., Hérault, B., Honorio Coronado, E. N., Jonckheere, I., Konan, E., Leavitt, S. M., Lewis, S. L., Lindsell, J. A., N'Dja, J. K., N'Guessan, A. E., Marimon, B., Mitchard, E. T. A., Monteagudo, A., Morel, A., Pekkarinen, A., Phillips, O. L., Poorter, L., Qie, L., Rutishauser, E., Ryan, C. M., Santoro, M., Silayo, D. S., Sist, P., Slik, J. W. F., Sonké, B., Sullivan, M. J. P., Vaglio Laurin, G., Vilanova, E., Wang, M. M. H., Zahabu, E. & Herold, M., 10 Jan 2022, In: Environmental Research Letters. 17, 1, 15 p., 014047.

    Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review

    Open Access
    3 Citations (Scopus)
    31 Downloads (Pure)
  • A comprehensive framework for assessing the accuracy and uncertainty of global above-ground biomass maps

    Araza, A., de Bruin, S., Herold, M., Quegan, S., Labriere, N., Rodriguez-Veiga, P., Avitabile, V., Santoro, M., Mitchard, E. T. A., Ryan, C. M., Phillips, O. L., Willcock, S., Verbeeck, H., Carreiras, J., Hein, L., Schelhaas, M. J., Pacheco-Pascagaza, A. M., da Conceição Bispo, P., Laurin, G. V., Vieilledent, G., & 10 othersSlik, F., Wijaya, A., Lewis, S. L., Morel, A., Liang, J., Sukhdeo, H., Schepaschenko, D., Cavlovic, J., Gilani, H. & Lucas, R., Apr 2022, In: Remote Sensing of Environment. 272, p. 1-16 16 p., 112917.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    13 Citations (Scopus)
    45 Downloads (Pure)
  • Climate change alters impacts of extreme climate events on a tropical perennial tree crop

    Creedy, T. J., Asare, R. A., Morel, A. C., Hirons, M., Mason, J., Malhi, Y., McDermott, C. L., Opoku, E. & Norris, K., 16 Nov 2022, In: Scientific Reports. 12, 9 p., 19653.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    7 Downloads (Pure)
  • Editorial: Intact Forests

    Evans, T. D., Morel, A. C., Malhi, Y. & Watson, J. E. M., 6 Sep 2021, In: Frontiers in Forests and Global Change. 4, 5 p., 753786.

    Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

    Open Access
    54 Downloads (Pure)
  • Fine root dynamics across pantropical rainforest ecosystems

    Huaraca Huasco, W., Riutta, T., Girardin, C. A. J., Hancco Pacha, F., Puma Vilca, B. L., Moore, S., Rifai, S. W., Del Aguila Pasquel, J., Araujo Murakami, A., Freitag, R., Morel, A. C., Demissie, S., Doughty, C. E., Oliveras, I., Galiano Cabrera, D. F., Durand Baca, L., Farfán Amézquita, F., Silva Espejo, J. E., da Costa, A. C. L., Oblitas Mendoza, E., & 26 othersQuesada, C. A., Evouna Ondo, F., Edzang Ndong, J., Jeffery, K. L., Mihindou, V., White, L. J. T., N'ssi Bengone, N., Ibrahim, F., Addo-Danso, S. D., Duah-Gyamfi, A., Djagbletey, G. D., Owusu-Afriyie, K., Amissah, L., Mbou, A. T., Marthews, T. R., Metcalfe, D. B., Aragão, L. E. O., Marimon-Junior, B. H., Marimon, B. S., Majalap, N., Adu-Bredu, S., Abernethy, K. A., Silman, M., Ewers, R. M., Meir, P. & Malhi, Y., Aug 2021, In: Global Change Biology. 27, 15, p. 3657-3680 24 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    4 Citations (Scopus)
    45 Downloads (Pure)