In many ways Hubbell's theory is the ecological analog to the neutral theory of genetic drift in genetics. The unified neutral theory of biogeography and biodiversity should stimulate research in new theoretical and empirical directions by ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and biogeographers.
`This provocative and enlightening work, deeply original and supported by some of the most extensive field research ever conducted in biology, will be regarded as one of the most important contributions to ecology and biogeography of the past half century.' E O Wilson
Highly innovative and insightful... Ideas are conveyed clearly and the addition of summary points at the end of each chapter facilitates assimilation. -- Richard T. Busing Ecological Engineering Hubbell's book is a very exciting one, deeply original, based on extensive field data, and convincing in its 'simple' explanations of many broad-scale patterns in biodiversity and biogeography. It will probably cause controversies, but primarily stimulate further research. -- Gottfried Jetschke Ecology [This] is a rich book about an idea that has the power to re-produce generic patterns and that will be in the back of your mind when you, again, try to make sense of the plethora of articles on species diversity, abundance and distribution. -- Carsten F. Dormann Basic and Applied Ecology A rich book about an idea that has the power to re-produce generic patterns and that will be in the back of your mind when you, again, try to make sense of the plethora of articles on species diversity, abundance and distribution... Once you start reading it, you will find it not a page too long. -- Carsten F. Dormann Basic Applied Ecology This is an important contribution to the development of a much sought-after explanation of pattern and process in an increasingly threatened global resource. -- Michael E. Meadows Environmental Conservation Hubbell has produced a book for all those who think about how communities are put together, even the not so mathematically minded... [It] is sure to influence how community ecology is done for years to come. -- Sandra Knapp Biological Conservation
Preface ix 1.MacArthur and Wilson's Radical Theory 3 2.On Current Theories of Relative Species Abundance 30 3.Dynamical Models of the Relative Abundance of Species 48 4.Local Community Dynamics under Ecological Drift 76 5.Metacommunity Dynamics and the Unified Theory 113 6.The Unified Theory and Dynamical Species-Area Relationships 152 7.Metapopulations and Biodiversity on the Metacommunity Landscape 202 8.Speciation, Phylogeny, and the Evolution of Metacommunity Biodiversity 231 9.Sampling, Parameter Estimation, and the Generality of the Unified Theory 281 10.Reconciling Dispersal-Assembly and Niche-Assembly Theories 319 Literature Cited 347 Index 371
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Stephen P.Hubbell is Professor of Plant Biology at the University of Georgia and Staff Scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. He is the author of more than one hundred papers in tropical plant ecology, theoretical ecology, and plant-animal interactions. He has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Pew Scholar Award in Conservation and the Environment. He is Chairman of the National Council for Science and the Environment (formerly the Committee for the National Institute for the Encironment) and the inventor of Extinction: The Game of Ecology.