Paleoecology and Vegetation Dynamics

We use a long-term perspective to address questions about the ecological and societal consequences of climatic change. Our group studies environmental dynamics on annual to millennial time scales with evidence preserved in sedimentary sequences (e.g., pollen, macrofossils, charcoal, diatoms, and chironomids) and model simulations. Research projects are investigating the long-term responses of vegetation to climatic changes; causes and consequences of fire-regime changes; land-use changes in a climatic context; and assessing the natural qualities of vegetation for nature conservation and environmental management.

  • Mediterranean Ecosystems
  • Forest potentials 
  • Island ecology 
  • Fire effects on tropical African ecosystems 
  • Alaskan Ecosystems
  • Climate-vegetation-land use linkages in Europe

► Google Scholar:

  • A range-wide postglacial history of Swiss stone pine based on molecular markers and palaeoecological evidence
    Gugerli, F; Brodbeck, S; Lendvay, B; Dauphin, B; Bagnoli, F; van der Knaap, WO; Tinner, W; Hohn, M; Vendramin, GG; Morales-Molino, C; Schworer, C 
    Journal Of Biogeography, 10.1111/jbi.14586  2023
  • A chronologically reliable record of 17,000 years of biomass burning in the Lake Victoria area
    Y Temoltzin-Loranca, E Gobet, B Vannière, JFN van Leeuwen, ...
    Quaternary Science Reviews 301, 10.1016/j.quascirev.2022.107915  2023
  • New vegetation history reconstructions suggest a biostratigraphic assignment of the lowermost Rodderberg interglacial (Germany) to MIS 11
    P Schläfli, E Gobet, I Hogrefe, F Bittmann, F Schlunegger, B Zolitschka, ...
    Quaternary Science Reviews 302, 107932,   2023
  • Radiocarbon sampling efforts for high-precision lake sediment chronologies
    F Rey, CJC Mustaphi, S Szidat, E Gobet, O Heiri, W Tinner
    Holocene, 10.1177/09596836231151835 2023
  • High resolution ancient sedimentary DNA shows that alpine plant diversity is associated with human land use and climate change
    S Garcés-Pastor, E Coissac, S Lavergne, C Schwörer, JP Theurillat, ...
    Nature communications 13 (1), 6559  2022
  • A new indicator approach to reconstruct agricultural land use in Europe from sedimentary pollen assemblages
    M Deza-Araujo, C Morales-Molino, M Conedera, PD Henne, P Krebs, ...
    Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 599, 111051  2022
  • Effects of temporal floral resource availability and non-crop habitats on broad bean pollination
    PW Eckerter, M Albrecht, C Bertrand, E Gobet, F Herzog, SC Pfister, ...
    Landscape ecology 37 (6), 1573-1586, 2022
  • Modern pollen - vegetation - plant diversity relationships across large environmental gradients in northern Greece
    Senn, Carolina; Tinner, Willy; Felde, Vivian A.; Gobet, Erika; van Leeuwen, Jacqueline F. N.; et al.
    Holocene 10.1177/09596836211060494  NOV 2021
  • 14,500 years of vegetation and land use history in the upper continental montane zone at Lac de Champex (Valais, Switzerland)
    Rey, Fabian; Brugger, Sandra O.; Gobet, Erika; Andenmatten, Romain; Bonini, Andrea; et al.
    Vegetation History And Archaeobotany 10.1007/s00334-021-00859-6  NOV 2021
  • First absolute chronologies of neolithic and bronze age settlements at Lake Ohrid based on dendrochronology and radiocarbon dating
    Hafner, Albert; Reich, Johannes; Ballmer, Ariane; Bolliger, Matthias; Antolin, Ferran; et al.
    Journal Of Archaeological Science-reports 10.1016/j.jasrep.2021.103107 AUG 2021
  • Olive groves around the lake. A ten-thousand-year history of a Cretan landscape (Greece) reveals the dominant role of humans in making this Mediterranean ecosystem
    Jouffroy-Bapicot, Isabelle; Pedrotta, Tiziana; Debret, Maxime; Field, Sophie; Sulpizio, Roberto; et al.
    Quaternary Science Reviews 10.1016/j.quascirev.2021.107072  SEP 1 2021
  • Palynological investigations reveal Eemian interglacial vegetation dynamics at Spiezberg, Bernese Alps, Switzerland
    Schlafli, Patrick; Gobet, Erika; van Leeuwen, Jacqueline F. N.; Vescovi, Elisa; Schwenk, Michael A.; et al.
    Quaternary Science Reviews 10.1016/j.quascirev.2021.106975 JUL 1 2021
  • Holocene vegetation, fire and land use dynamics at Lake Svityaz, an agriculturally marginal site in northwestern Ukraine
    Schworer, Christoph; Gobet, Erika; van Leeuwen, Jacqueline F. N.; Bogli, Sarah; Imboden, Rachel; et al.
    Vegetation History And Archaeobotany 10.1007/s00334-021-00844-z  JUN 2021
  • Influence of taxonomic resolution on the value of anthropogenic pollen indicators
    Deza-Araujo, Mara; Morales-Molino, Cesar; Conedera, Marco; Pezzatti, Gianni B.; Pasta, Salvatore; Tinner Willy
    Vegetation History And Archaeobotany  10.1007/s00334-021-00838-x  MAY 2021
  • 8,000 years of climate, vegetation, fire and land-use dynamics in the thermo-mediterranean vegetation belt of northern Sardinia (Italy)
    Pedrotta, Tiziana; Gobet, Erika; Schworer, Christoph; Beffa, Giorgia; Butz, Christoph; et al.
    Vegetation History And Archaeobotany  10.1007/s00334-021-00832-3  Early Access: APR 2021
  • Mountain aquatic Isoetes populations reflect millennial-scale environmental changes in the Bohemian Forest Ecosystem, Central Europe
    Moravcova, Alice; Ticha, Anna; Carter, Vachel A.; Vondrak, Daniel; Ctvrtlikova, Martina; et al.
    Holocene 10.1177/0959683620988060 Published: MAY 2021
  • The last hunter-gatherers and early farmers of the middle southern Buh River Valley (Central Ukraine) in VIII-V MILL. BC
    Kiosak, Dmytro; Kotova, Nadiia; Tinner, Willy; Szidat, Soenke; Nielsen, Ebbe H.; et al.
    Radiocarbon 10.1017/RDC.2020.120 Published: FEB 2021
  • Variations of sedimentary Fe and Mn fractions under changing lake mixing regimes, oxygenation and land surface processes during Late-glacial and Holocene times
    Makri, Stamatina; Wienhues, Giulia; Bigalke, Moritz; Gilli, Adrian; Rey, Fabian; et al.
    Science Of The Total Environment 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.143418 FEB 10 2021
  • Using Temporally Resolved Floral Resource Maps to Explain Bumblebee Colony Performance in Agricultural Landscapes
    Eckerter, Philipp W.; Albus, Lars; Natarajan, Sharumathi; Albrecht, Matthias; Ammann, Lolita; et al.
    Agronomy-basel 10.3390/agronomy10121993 DEC 2020
Willy Tinner Uni Bern

Prof. Dr. Willy Tinner
University of Bern
Institute of Plant Sciences &
Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)
3013 Bern

Tel: +41 (0)31 631 49 32


  • Vegetation Ecology and Population Biology 
  • Nature Conservation and Forest Management 
  • Climate Sciences 
  • Archaeology and Archaeobotany
  • Earth and Quaternary Sciences