Victor Van der Meersch

Victor Van der Meersch

PhD student

Centre d'Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive (CEFE)


I am interested in a broad range of research topics, running from forest ecology to landscape ecology. The common ground between my different areas of interest is to understand how human-related activities induce major global changes and disrupt the functionning of ecosystems and biodiversity. During my previous research experiences, for instance, I had the opportunity to study the impacts of the non-indigenous species invasion in a tropical forest ecosystem, as well as the impacts of habitat fragmentation, crop rotation and farming practices on biodiversity in agricultural landscapes.

As climate change is causing profound changes in the functioning of ecosystems and the geographical distribution of species and will become soon the main threat to biodiversity, particularly in forested ecosystems, I take special interest in studying the impacts of climate change on forests for the upcoming decades. I have just started a PhD to study the reliability of species distribution model projections by comparing the capacity of correlative models and process-based models to predict past and future distributions of temperate tree species.


  • Terrestrial ecology
  • Forest ecosystem and agroecosystem
  • Modelling


  • MSc in Ecology, 2020

    National Museum of Natural History (MNHN), Paris

  • MEng in Agronomy and Environmental Sciences, 2020

    Institute of Technology for Life, Food and Environmental Sciences (AgroParisTech), Paris



PhD student

Centre d’Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive (CEFE, CNRS)

Oct 2021 – Present Montpellier, France

Fine comparison of the capacity of correlative models and process-based models to predict past and future distributions of iconic temperate tree species from European forests.

For further information, see thesis project .


Project assistant

French Biodiversity Agency (OFB)

Oct 2020 – Jun 2021 Vincennes, France
Involved in the territorial diagnosis of biodiversity in the Ile-de-France regional office, to help with identifying which major pressures on biodiversity are currently at work, so as to give recommendations as to which policy and priority actions should be implemented

Research intern

Centre for Ecology and Conservation Sciences (CESCO)

Feb 2020 – Jul 2020 Paris, France
Studied the effects of structure and dynamics of agricultural lanscape on biodiversity, in particular on solitary bees, with data from a national participatory program.

Research intern

French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD)

Feb 2019 – Jul 2019 Yamoussoukro, Côte d'Ivoire
Used a Bayesian approach to model the causes of the spread of an invasive tree in a tropical forest and its consequences on aboveground biomass and tree community diversity.

Publications and other documents

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