Uniting pattern and process in plant ecology

  • de Vries F
  • Bardgett R
  • Scholtz R
 et al. 
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Abstract

We write to convey our concerns that some mainstream evolutionary journals continue to publish articles that, in our view, present misleading accounts of biological evolution. Specifically, we argue that “panbiogeographic” studies of spatiotemporal biological history (e.g., Craw 1988; Heads 2010a, 2010b, 2011, 2012a, 2012b) are detrimental to the progress of biogeography as a discipline. The panbiogeographic approach usually ignores long-distance dispersal and considers alternative hypotheses only within the narrow confines of assumed ancient vicariance. Although previous commentators have already penned epitaphs for the panbiogeographic paradigm (e.g., Cox 1998;McDowall 2004; McGlone 2005; Briggs 2007), some editorial and review processes continue to allow this misleading approach to be promulgated as a useful scientific method. Despite the approach being termed “moribund” (Briggs 2007), recent years have seen an apparent upswing in the number of panbiogeographic studies published (e.g., Kutschker and Morrone 2012; Mercado-Salas et al. 2012; Silva et al. 2012).

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Authors

  • Franciska T. de Vries

  • Richard D. Bardgett

  • Rheinhardt Scholtz

  • Gregory A Kiker

  • Gregory D Duckworth

  • Ursula M Scharler

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