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RAREFUNCTIONS: The causes and consequences of spatial and temporal variation in rare traits.

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "RareFunctions" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: RUE MICHEL ANGE 3
city: PARIS
postcode: 75794

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country France [FR]
 Project website
 Total cost 185˙076 €
 EC max contribution 185˙076 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-06-01   to  2018-05-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

Rare species have long been the focus of conservation attention, but the commonness or rarity of particular characteristics or phenotypes is generally ignored. However, traits can also be rare, and evidence suggests that while rare traits tend to occur in rare species (and so are at greater risk of extinction), not all rare species have rare traits. Further, the diversity of traits present in a community (‘functional diversity’) is closely tied to its function, and so rare traits may make essential contributions to ecosystem function and health. For example, predators may be rare in a system, but act as keystone species with effects across the food web. Given the possibility that rare traits make important contributions to ecosystem products and services and given their greater risk of extinction, it is imperative to explore this question of “functional rarity”. This project will help overcome the lack of a clear definition for functional rarity, the absence of geographical information on its distribution through space and time, and the need for experimental evidence tying the loss of rare traits to effects on ecosystems. This project aims to apply a system of classification to distinguish between different forms of functional rarity to a comprehensive database of plant diversity and trait values in French permanent grasslands. This will produce one of the most comprehensive inventories showing how functional rarity varies through space and time. In addition, RAREFUNCTIONS will use microbial microcosms to test how the loss of rare traits from a community alters ecosystem function. This proposal will establish baseline knowledge on the distribution of functional rarity in French permanent grasslands, a local hotspot of biodiversity and in decline, while also answering general questions about the causes and consequences of rare traits.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2017 Gr?goire T. Freschet, Oscar J. Valverde-Barrantes, Caroline M. Tucker, Joseph M. Craine, M. Luke McCormack, Cyrille Violle, Florian Fort, Christopher B. Blackwood, Katherine R. Urban-Mead, Colleen M. Iversen, Anne Bonis, Louise H. Comas, Johannes H. C. Cornelissen, Ming Dong, Dali Guo, Sarah E. Hobbie, Robert J. Holdaway, Steven W. Kembel, Naoki Makita, Vladimir G. Onipchenko, Catherine Picon-Cochard, Peter B. Reich, Enrique G. de la Riva, Stuart W. Smith, Nadejda A. Soudzilovskaia, Mark G. Tjoelker, David A. Wardle, Catherine Roumet
Climate, soil and plant functional types as drivers of global fine-root trait variation
published pages: , ISSN: 0022-0477, DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12769
Journal of Ecology 2019-07-24
2017 Marc W. Cadotte, Caroline M. Tucker
Should Environmental Filtering be Abandoned?
published pages: 429-437, ISSN: 0169-5347, DOI: 10.1016/j.tree.2017.03.004
Trends in Ecology & Evolution 32/6 2019-07-24
2017 Matthias Grenié, Pierre Denelle, Caroline M. Tucker, François Munoz, Cyrille Violle
funrar: An R package to characterize functional rarity
published pages: , ISSN: 1366-9516, DOI: 10.1111/ddi.12629
Diversity and Distributions 2019-07-24

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