I am interested in interactions: how individuals interact, making complex population dynamics arise, how local mechanisms interact to produce large-scale patterns, how large-scale patterns affect individuals, and how human societies interact with their environment. In practice, I have dealt mostly with woody plants dynamics, with or without interactions with farming activities: forest species migration under climate change, how mechanisms like re-sprouting or seed masting affect community dynamics, forest expansion with changes in grazing practices.
My favourite tool to approach these questions is individual-based modeling, which allows to simulate different situations with great flexibility. Combined with adequate statistical analysis or GIS utilities, it gives a good insight into ecological phenomena in space and time, for theoretical or applied studies.
Caplat P., Anand M. (In Press). Effects of disturbance frequency, species traits and resprouting on directional succession in an individual-based model of forest dynamics. Journal of Ecology
Caplat P., Anand M. and Bauch C. (2010). Modelling invasibility in endogenously oscillating tree populations: timing of invasion matters. Biological Invasions. 12:219-231
Caplat P. and Fonderflick J. (2009). Bird response to grassland fragmentation in a Mediterranean upland: patch area interacts with species biology. Biodiversity and Conservation. 18: 2979-2995
Caplat P., Anand M. and Bauch C. (2008a) Interactions between climate change, competition, dispersal and disturbances in a tree migration model. Theoretical Ecology. 1: 209-220
Caplat P., Anand M. and Bauch C. (2008b). Symmetric competition causes population oscillations in an individual-based model of forest dynamics. Ecological Modelling. 211: 491-500
Caplat P., Lepart J. and Marty P. (2006). Landscape patterns and agriculture: modelling the long-term effects of human practices on Pinus sylvestris spatial dynamics (Causse Mejean, France). Landscape Ecology 21: 657-670.
Marty P., Lepart J. and Caplat P. (2006). Géographie et écologie des paysages : quelles relations ? Bulletin de l’Association des Géographes Français 3: 355-367.