About this Research Topic
Cities and other urban environments, with their deep and convergent anthropogenic transformation worldwide, are nodes of intense species exchange and for this reason hotspot of accelerated biotic homogenization for various organisms. However, the wide focus of this topic calls for a multidisciplinary approach assessing the response of different taxa to the stress caused by the expansion of urban areas. For example, plant, bird and mammal responses to a gradient of urbanization could be different. In this regard, the exploration of taxonomic diversity, functional diversity and phylogenetic diversity or evolutionary uniqueness of animal and plant assemblages could be an interesting strategy, able to provide more comprehensive answers on direct and indirect effects of urbanization processes on natural environments, necessary for setting accurate conservation planning.
This Research Topic has the following aim: to collect a robust set of original scientific evidence (papers), in order to assess the impact of specific elements of urbanization and/or pollution on different and complementary biodiversity metrics. With this aim, authors will be requested original contributions by combining field data, geospatial analysis and modelling procedures, in order to provide new insights on identification of problems and pitfalls related to the interactions between humans, plants and animals in human dominated environments.
We encourage the following sub-themes: direct/indirect effects of urban features on plant / animal species and assemblages; explicit tests of different effects in a multi-level approach of diversity or community metrics (taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity); associations between urban areas and incidence of alien species; effects of light and noise pollution on plant and animals of urban areas; potential use of plant and animal species as bioindicators of environmental quality in cities; and human perception of biodiversity in urban areas. The topic could be open to receive also new suggested sub-themes falling within the broad topic of the proposal.
Keywords: Urbanization process, biotic homogenization, biodiversity decline, functional diversity, invasive species
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.