Prof Tiffany Marie Knight

Alexander von Humboldt Professor and Head of Research Group; iDiv Speaker



Biological invasions are considered one of the largest threats to biodiversity, and research on the causes of invasions has exploded in the past two decades.  Despite over 1,000 publications in the field of invasion biology, Ecologists have still not reached consensus on which mechanisms cause some non-native species to dominate and alter community structure and ecosystems functions, while other non-native species fail to do so.  At sDiv, I will examine how spatial scale, multivariate functional traits and phylogenetic relationships between non-native plants and resident communities influence invasiveness. To accomplish this, I will use databases containing spatially-explicit information on plant communities, phylogenies and functional traits.  Fortunately, databases of local plant communities are becoming widely available, functional trait databases such as the TRY initiative provide unprecedented availability of plant traits, and genomic data for developing community-level phylogenies are available in GenBank.

iDiv publications


Slabbert, E. L., Knight, T. M., Wubet, T., Kautzner, A., Baessler, C., Auge, H., Roscher, C. and Schweiger, O.

(2022): Abiotic factors are more important than land management and biotic interactions in shaping vascular plant and soil fungal communities. Global Ecology and Conservation

Andrzejak, M., Korell, L., Auge, H. and Knight, T. M.

(2022): Effects of climate change and pollen supplementation on the reproductive success of two grassland plant species. Ecology and Evolution

Bergamo, P. J., Wolowski, M., Tambosi, L. R., Garcia, E., Agostini, K., Garibaldi, L. A., Knight, T. M., Nic Lughadha, E., Oliveira, P. E. A. M., Marques, M. C. M., Maruyama, P. K., Maués, M. M., Oppata, A. K., Rech, A. R., Saraiva, A. M., Silva, F. D. S., Sousa, G., Tsukahara, R. Y., Varassin, I. G., Viana, B. F., Freitas, L.

(2021): Areas Requiring Restoration Efforts are a Complementary Opportunity to Support the Demand for Pollination Services in Brazil. Environmental Science & Technology

Lemmer, J., Andrzejak, M., Compagnoni, A., Knight, T. M., Korell, L.

(2021): Climate change and grassland management interactively influence the population dynamics of Bromus erectus (Poaceae). Basic and Applied Ecology

Wohlwend, M. R., Craven, D., Weigelt, P., Seebens, H., Winter, M., Kreft, H., Dawson, W., Essl, F., van Kleunen, M., Pergl, J., Pyšek, P., Space, J., Thomas, P. and Knight, T.

(2021): Data Descriptor: Pacific Introduced Flora (PaciFLora). Biodiversity Data Journal

Motivans Švara, E., Ştefan, V., Sossai, E., Feldmann, R., Aguilon, D. J., Bontsutsnaja, A., E-Vojtkó, A., Kilian, I. C., Lang, P., Mõtlep, M., Prangel, E., Viljur, M. L., Knight, T. M., Neuenkamp, L.

(2021): Effects of different types of low-intensity management on plant-pollinator interactions in Estonian grasslands. Ecology and Evolution

Barton, K. E., Westerband, A., Ostertag, R., Stacy, E., Winter, K., Drake, D. R., Fortini, L. B., Litton, C. M., Cordell, S., Krushelnycky, P., Kawelo, K., Feliciano, K., Bennett, G., Knight, T.

(2021): Hawai‘i forest review: Synthesizing the ecology, evolution, and conservation of a model system. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics

Thompson, A., Ștefan, V., Knight, T. M.

(2021): Oilseed Rape Shares Abundant and Generalized Pollinators with Its Co-Flowering Plant Species. Insects

Thompson, A., Frenzel, M., Schweiger, O., Musche, M., Groth, T., Roberts, S. P. M., Kuhlmann, M. and Knight, T. M.

(2021): Pollinator sampling methods influence community patterns assessments by capturing species with different traits and at different abundances. Ecological Indicators

Rodger, J. G., Bennett, J. M., Razanajatovo, M., Knight, T. M., Kleunen, M. v., Ashman, T.-L., Steets, J. A., Hui, C., Arceo-Gómez, G., Burd, M., Burkle, L. A., Burns, J. H., Durka, W., Freitas, L., Kemp, J. E., Li, J., Pauw, A., Vamosi, J. C., Wolowski, M., Xia, J. and Ellis, A. G.

(2021): Widespread vulnerability of flowering plant seed production to pollinator declines. Science Advances

A. Bogdan, S. C. Levin, R. Salguero-Gómez, T. M. Knight

(2021): Demographic analysis of an Israeli Carpobrotus population. PLOS ONE

A. C. Westerband, T. M. Knight, K. E. Barton   

(2021): Intraspecific trait variation and reversals of trait strategies across key climate gradients in native Hawaiian plants and non-native invaders. Annals of Botany

A. Compagnoni, E. Pardini, T. M. Knight

(2021): Increasing temperature threatens an already endangered coastal dune plant. Ecosphere

A. Compagnoni, S. Levin, D. Z. Childs, S. Harpole, M. Paniw, G. Römer, J. H. Burns, J. Che-Castaldo, N. Rüger, G. Kunstler, J. M. Bennett, C. R. Archer, O. R. Jones, R. Salguero-Gómez, T. M. Knight

(2021): Herbaceous perennial plants with short generation time have stronger responses to climate anomalies than those with longer generation time. Nature Communications

E. Arlé, A. Zizka, P. Keil, M. Winter, F. Essl, T. Knight, P. Weigelt, M. Jiménez-Muñoz, C. Meyer

(2021): bRacatus: A method to estimate the accuracy and biogeographical status of georeferenced biological data. Methods in Ecology and Evolution

G. Keppel, D. Craven, P. Weigelt, S. A. Smith, M. T. van der Sande, B. Sandel, S. C. Levin, H. Kreft, T. M. Knight   

(2021): Synthesizing tree biodiversity data to understand global patterns and processes of vegetation. Journal of Vegetation Science

L. Korell, H. Auge, J. M. Chase, W. S. Harpole, T. M. Knight

(2021): Responses of plant diversity to precipitation change are strongest at local spatial scales and in drylands. Nature Communications

M. Paniw, T. D. James, C. Ruth Archer, G. Römer, S. Levin, A. Compagnoni, J. Che-Castaldo, J. M. Bennett, A. Mooney, D. Z. Childs, A. Ozgul, O. R. Jones, J. H. Burns, A. P. Beckerman, A. Patwary, N. Sanchez-Gassen, T. M. Knight, R. Salguero-Gómez

(2021): The myriad of complex demographic responses of terrestrial mammals to climate change and gaps of knowledge: A global analysis. Journal of Animal Ecology

M. R. Wohlwend, D. Craven, P. Weigelt, H. Seebens, M. Winter, H. Kreft, D. Zurell, J. Sarmento Cabral, F. Essl, M. van Kleunen, J. Pergl, P. Pyšek, T. M. Knight

(2021): Anthropogenic and environmental drivers shape diversity of naturalized plants across the Pacific. Diversity and Distributions

S. C. Levin, D. Z. Childs, A. Compagnoni, S. Evers, T. M. Knight, R. Salguero-Gómez

(2021): ipmr: Flexible implementation of Integral Projection Models in R. Methods in Ecology and Evolution

U. V. Neeraja, S. Rajendrakumar, C. S. Saneesh, V. Dyda, T. M. Knight

(2021): Fire alters diversity, composition, and structure of dry tropical forests in the Eastern Ghats. Ecology and Evolution

Ashman, T. L., Arceo-Gomez, G., Bennett, J. M., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Is heterospecific pollen receipt the missing link in understanding pollen limitation of plant reproduction?. American Journal of Botany

Barton, K. E., Jones, C., Edwards, K. F., Shiels, A. B., Knight, T

(2020): Local adaptation constrains drought tolerance in a tropical foundation tree. Journal of Ecology

Bennett, J. M., Steets, J. A., Burns, J. H., Burkle, L. A., Vamosi, J. C., Wolowski, M., Arceo-Gómez, G., Burd, M., Durka, W., Ellis, A. G., Freitas, L., Li, J., Rodger, J. G., Ştefan, V., Xia, J., Knight, T. M., Ashman, T.-L.

(2020): Land use and pollinator dependency drives global patterns of pollen limitation in the Anthropocene. Nature Communications

Blowes, S. A., Chase, J. M., Di Franco, A., Frid, O., Gotelli, N. J., Guidetti, P., Knight, T. M., May, F., McGlinn, D. J., Micheli, F., Sala, E., Belmaker, J.

(2020): Mediterranean marine protected areas have higher biodiversity via increased evenness, not abundance. Journal of Applied Ecology

CaraDonna, P. J., L. A. Burkle, B. Schwarz, J. Resasco, T. M. Knight, G. Benadi, N. Blüthgen, C. F. Dormann, Q. Fang, J. Fründ, B. Gauzens, C. N. Kaiser-Bunbury, R. Winfree, D. P. Vázquez

(2020): Seeing through the static: the temporal dimension of plant–animal mutualistic interactions. Ecology Letters

Chase, J. M., Blowes, S. A., Knight, T. M., Gerstner, K., May, F.

(2020): Ecosystem decay exacerbates biodiversity loss with habitat loss. Nature

Che-Castaldo, J., Jones, O. R., Kendall, B. E., Burns, J. H., Childs, D. Z., Ezard, T. H. G., Hernandez-Yanez, H., Hodgson, D. J., Jongejans, E., Knight, T. et al.

(2020): Comments to "Persistent problems in the construction of matrix population models". Ecological Modelling

Dunker, S., Motivans, E., Rakosy, D., Boho, D., Mäder, P., Hornick, T., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Pollen analysis using multispectral imaging flow cytometry and deep learning. New Phytologist

Koch, V., L. Zoller, J. M. Bennett, T. M. Knight

(2020): Pollinator dependence but no pollen limitation for eight plants occurring north of the Arctic Circle. Ecology and Evolution

Korell, L., Auge, H., Chase, J. M., Harpole, W. S., Knight, T. M.

(2020): We need more realistic climate change experiments for understanding ecosystems of the future. Global Change Biology

L. Zoller, J. M. Bennett, T. M. Knight   

(2020): Diel-scale temporal dynamics in the abundance and composition of pollinators in the Arctic summer. Scientific Reports

Levin, S. C., Crandall, R. M., Pokoski, T., Stein, C., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Phylogenetic and functional distinctiveness explain alien plant population responses to competition. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

McGlinn, D. J., T. Engel, S. A. Blowes, N. J. Gotelli, T. M. Knight, B. J. McGill, N. J. Sanders, J. M. Chase

(2020): A multiscale framework for disentangling the roles of evenness, density, and aggregation on diversity gradients. Ecology

Schmidt, R., Auge, H., Deising, H. B., Hensen, I., Mangan, S. A., Schadler, M., Stein, C., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Abundance, origin, and phylogeny of plants do not predict community-level patterns of pathogen diversity and infection. Ecology and Evolution

Schwarz, B., Vázquez, D. P., CaraDonna, P. J., Knight, T. M., Benadi, G., Dormann, C. F., Gauzens, B.,Motivans, E., Resasco, J., Blüthgen, N., Burkle, L. A., Fang, Q., Kaiser–Bunbury, C. N., Alarcón, R., Bain, J. A., Chacoff, N. P., Huang, S. Q., LeBuhn, G., MacLeod, M., Petanidou, T., Rasmussen, C., Simanonok, M. P., Thompson, A. H., Fründ, J.

(2020): Temporal scale-dependence of plant–pollinator networks. Oikos

Slabbert, E. L., Schweiger, O., Wubet, T., Kautzner, A., Baessler, C., Auge, H., Roscher, C., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Scale-dependent impact of land management on above- and belowground biodiversity. Ecology and Evolution

Vitt, P., Havens, K., Jolls, C. L., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Temporal variation in the roles of exotic and native plant species in plant–pollinator networks. Ecosphere

Zizka, A., Silvestro, D., Vitt, P., Knight, T. M.

(2020): Automated conservation assessment of the orchid family with deep learning. Conservation Biology

Arceo-Gómez, G., A. Schroeder, C. Albor, T.-L. Ashman, T. M. Knight, J. M. Bennett, B. Suarez, V. Parra-Tabla

(2019): Global geographic patterns of heterospecific pollen receipt help uncover potential ecological and evolutionary impacts across plant communities worldwide. Scientific Reports

Bernardo, H. L., Goad, R., Vitt, P., Knight, T. M.

(2019): Nonadditive effects among threats on rare plant species. Conservation Biology

Bernardo, H. L., P. Vitt, R. Goad, S. Masi, T. M. Knight

(2019): Using Long-Term Population Monitoring Data to Prioritize Conservation Action among Rare Plant Species. Natural Areas Journal

Burns, J. H., J. M. Bennett, ..., T. M. Knight, J. A. Steets

(2019): Plant traits moderate pollen limitation of introduced and native plants: a phylogenetic meta-analysis of global scale. New Phytologist

Craven, D., T. M. Knight, K. E. Barton, L. Bialic-Murphy,  J. M. Chase

(2019): Dissecting macroecological and macroevolutionary patterns of forest biodiversity across the Hawaiian archipelago. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Fill, J. M., Pearson, E., Knight, T. M., Crandall, R. M.

(2019): An invasive legume increases perennial grass biomass: An indirect pathway for plant community change. PLOS ONE

Havens, K., Jolls, C. L., Knight, T. M., Vitt, P.

(2019): Risks and Rewards: Assessing the Effectiveness and Safety of Classical Invasive Plant Biocontrol by Arthropods. BioScience

Havens, K., Jolls, C. L., Knight, T. M., Vitt, P.

(2019): We Should Know whether a Tool Works (and How Dangerous It Is) before We Use It: Response to Hinz and Colleagues. BioScience

Korell, L., Auge, H., Chase, J. M., Harpole, W. S., Knight, T. M.

(2019): Understanding plant communities of the future requires filling knowledge gaps. Global Change Biology

Levin, S. C., Crandall, R. M., Knight, T. M.

(2019): Population projection models for 14 alien plant species in the presence and absence of above-ground competition. Ecology

McGlinn, D. J., Xiao, X., May, F., Gotelli, N. J., Engel, T., Blowes, S. A., Knight, T. M., Purschke, O., Chase, J. M., McGill, B. J.

(2019): Measurement of Biodiversity (MoB): A method to separate the scale-dependent effects of species abundance distribution, density, and aggregation on diversity change. Methods in Ecology and Evolution

Sandel, B., Weigelt, P., Kreft, H., Keppel, G., van der Sande, M. T., Levin, S., Smith, S., Craven, D., Knight, T. M

(2019): Current climate, isolation and history drive global patterns of tree phylogenetic endemism. Global Ecology and Biogeography

van der Sande, M. T., Bruelheide, H., ..., Haider, S., ..., Purschke, O., Pyšek, P., Weigelt, P., Winter, M., ..., Jandt, U., ..., Kattge, J., Kearsley, E., Klotz, S., ..., Knight, T. M.

(2019): Similar factors underlie tree abundance in forests in native and alien ranges. Global Ecology and Biogeography

Westerband, A. C., Kagawa-Viviani, A. K., Bogner, K. K., Beilman, D. W., Knight, T. M., Barton, K. E.

(2019): Seedling drought tolerance and functional traits vary in response to the timing of water availability in a keystone Hawaiian tree species. Plant Ecology

Wohlwend, M. R., M. R. Schutzenhofer, T. M. Knight

(2019): Long-term experiment manipulating community assembly results in favorable restoration outcomes for invaded prairies. Restoration Ecology

Bennett, J. M., Steets, J. A., Durka, W., Vamosi, J. C., Arceo-Gómez, G., Burd, M., Burkle, L. A., Ellis, A. G., Freitas, L., Li, J., Rodger, J. G., Wolowski, M., Xia, J., Ashman, T. L., Knight, T. M.

(2018): GloPL, a global data base on pollen limitation of plant reproduction. Scientific Data

Bennett, J. M., Thompson, A., Goia, I., Feldmann, R., Ştefan, V., Bogdan, A., Rakosy, D., Beloiu, M., Biro, I.-B., Bluemel, S., Filip, M., Madaj, A.-M., Martin, A., Passonneau, S., Kalisch, D. P., Scherer, G., Knight, T. M.

(2018): A review of European studies on pollination networks and pollen limitation, and a case study designed to fill in a gap. AoB PLANTS

Bernardo, H. L., Vitt, P., Goad, R., Masi, S., Knight, T. M.

(2018): Count population viability analysis finds that interacting local and regional threats affect the viability of a rare plant. Ecological Indicators

Chase, J. M., McGill, B. J., McGlinn, D. J., May, F., Blowes, S. A., Xiao, X., Knight, T. M., Purschke, O., Gotelli, N. J.

(2018): Embracing scale-dependence to achieve a deeper understanding of biodiversity and its change across communities. Ecology Letters

Craven, D., Knight, T. M., Barton, K. E., Bialic-Murphy, L., Cordell, S., Giardina, C. P., Gillespie, T. W., Ostertag, R., Sack, L., Chase, J. M.

(2018): OpenNahele: the open Hawaiian forest plot database. Biodiversity Data Journal

Knight, T. M., Ashman, T.-L., Bennett, J. M., Burns, J. H., Passonneau, S., Steets, J. A.

(2018): Reflections on, and visions for, the changing field of pollination ecology. Ecology Letters

Pardini, E. A., Parsons, L. S., Stefan, V., Knight, T. M.

(2018): GLMM BACI environmental impact analysis shows coastal dune restoration reduces seed predation on an endangered plant. Restoration Ecology

Thompson, A. H., Knight, T. M.

(2018): Exotic plant species receive adequate pollinator service despite variable integration into plant–pollinator networks. Oecologia

Crawford, K. M., Knight, T. M.

(2017): Competition overwhelms the positive plant–soil feedback generated by an invasive plant. Oecologia

Pardini, E. A., Patten, M. V., Knight, T. M.

(2017): Effects of seed density and proximity to refuge habitat on seed predation rates for a rare and a common Lupinus species. American Journal of Botany

Schuler, M. S., Chase, J. M., Knight, T. M.

(2017): Habitat patch size alters the importance of dispersal for species diversity in an experimental freshwater community. Ecology and Evolution

Schuler, M. S., Chase, J. M., Knight, T. M.

(2017): Habitat size modulates the influence of heterogeneity on species richness patterns in a model zooplankton community. Ecology

Vitt, P., Knight, T. M., Schutzenhofer, M., Kleiman, W., Havens, K., Bittner, T.

(2017): Experimental Grazing and Grass-Specific Herbicide Application Benefit Rare Forb Recruitment. Natural Areas Journal

Bernardo, H. L., Albrecht, M. A., Knight, T. M.

(2016): Increased drought frequency alters the optimal management strategy of an endangered plant. Biological Conservation

Guthrie, S. G., Crandall, R. M., Knight, T. M.

(2016): Fire indirectly benefits fitness in two invasive species. Biological Invasions

Crandall, R., Knight, T. M.

(2015): Positive frequency dependence undermines the success of restoration using historical disturbance regimes. Ecology Letters

S. M. Evers,T. M. Knight, D. W. Inouye, T. E. X. Miller, R. Salguero-Gómez, A. M. Iler, A. Compagnoni

(): Lagged and dormant season climate better predict plant vital rates than climate during the growing season. Global Change Biology
Icon address

Puschstrasse 4
04103 Leipzig

Icon roomnumber


Icon phone
+49 341 9739146
Icon institutes

Alexander von Humboldt Professorship

Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research GmbH – UFZ

Share this site on:
iDiv is a research centre of theDFG Logo