Phyto-Flou/une citation

From: Daniel Chessel (
Date: Wed Jun 09 1999 - 17:04:57 MET DST

Pour agrémenter le débat

Anderson, D.J. (1965) Classification and ordination in vegetation science: controversy over a non-existent problem?. Journal of Ecology : 53, 521-526.


There is at present [1965] a controversy between those plant sociologists who regard classificatory procedures as being more satisfactory and meaningful and those sociologists who prefer to use ordinal techniques for the same reasons, in preliminary analyses of vegetation. It is argued here that this controversy is based upon a misunderstanding of the variety of structure which can be exhibited by different types of vegetation; structural complexity depends very largely upon the type, duration, scale and intensity of environmental selective processes which have operated during the development of any one piece of vegetation. It is therefore argued that neither analytical approach is intrinsically better or more correct than the other; the applicability of these procedures to any particular problem depends very largely upon the chosen terms of reference of the investigator concerned: the acid test of any methodology rests on the extent to which it assists us to understand more meaningfully the ecological compl
exity of the biosphere.

Daniel Chessel
Universite Lyon 1 - Bat 401C - 69622 Villeurbanne CEDEX - France
Tel : 04 72 44 82 77 Fax : 04 72 43 11 41

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