Fundamentals of Ecological Modelling

Fundamentals of Ecological Modelling

Applications in Environmental Management and Research

4th Edition - January 10, 2011

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  • Author: S.E. Jorgensen
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780444535672
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444535689

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Fundamentals of Ecological Modelling: Applications in Environmental Management and Research, Fourth Edition, provides a comprehensive discussion of the fundamental principles of ecological modeling. The first two editions of this book (published in 1986 and 1994) focused on the roots of the discipline the four main model types that dominated the field 30-40 years ago: (1) dynamic biogeochemical models; (2) population dynamic models; (3) ecotoxicological models; and (4) steady-state biogeochemical and energy models. The third edition focused on the mathematical formulations of ecological processes that are included in ecological models. This fourth edition uses the four model types previously listed as the foundation and expands the latest model developments in spatial models, structural dynamic models, and individual-based models. As these seven types of models are very different and require different considerations in the model development phase, a separate chapter is devoted to the development of each of the model types. Throughout the text, the examples given from the literature emphasize the application of models for environmental management and research.

Key Features

  • Presents the most commonly used model types with a step-by-step outline of the modeling procedure used for each
  • Shows readers through an illustrated example of how to use each model in research and management settings
  • New edition is revised to include only essential theory with a focus on applications
  • Includes case studies, illustrations, and exercises (case study of an ecological problem with full illustration on how to solve the problem)


Ecologists and environmental scientists interested in modeling and Ph.D. students with little or no modeling background. Graduate students in ecology and environmental science programs

Table of Contents

  • Series Editors

    Author Biography



    1: Introduction

    1.1. Physical and Mathematical Models

    1.2. Models as a Management Tool

    1.3. Models as a Research Tool

    1.4. Models and Holism

    1.5. The Ecosystem as an Object for Research

    1.6. The Development of Ecological and Environmental Models

    1.7. State of the Art in the Application of Models

    2: Concepts of Modelling

    2.1. Introduction

    2.2. Modelling Elements

    2.3. The Modelling Procedure

    2.4. Verification

    2.5. Sensitivity Analysis

    2.6. Calibration

    2.7. Validation and Assessment of the Model Uncertainty

    2.8. Model Classes

    2.9. Selection of Model Complexity and Structure

    2.10. Parameter Estimation

    2.11. Ecological Modelling and Quantum Theory

    2.12. Modelling Constraints


    3: An Overview of Different Model Types

    3.1. Introduction

    3.2. Model Types — An Overview

    3.3. Conceptual Models

    3.4. Advantages and Disadvantages of the Most Applied Model Types

    3.5. Applicability of the Different Model Types

    4: Mediated or Institutionalized Modelling

    4.1. Introduction: Why Do We Need Mediated Modelling?

    4.2. The Institutionalized Modelling Process

    4.3. When Do You Apply Institutionalized or Mediated Modelling (IMM)?


    5: Modelling Population Dynamics

    5.1. Introduction

    5.2. Basic Concepts

    5.3. Growth Models in Population Dynamics

    Illustration 5.1

    5.4. Interaction Between Populations

    Illustration 5.2

    Illustration 5.3

    5.5. Matrix Models

    Illustration 5.4

    5.6. Fishery Models

    5.7. Metapopulation Models

    5.8. Infection Models


    6: Steady-State Models

    6.1. Introduction

    6.2. A Chemostat Model to Illustrate a Steady-State Biogeochemical Model

    Illustration 6.1

    6.3. Ecopath Models

    6.4. Ecological Network Analysis


    7: Dynamic Biogeochemical Models

    7.1. Introduction

    7.2. Application of Biogeochemical Dynamic Models

    7.3. The Streeter-Phelps River BOD/DO Model, Using STELLA

    7.4. Eutrophication Models I: Simple Eutrophication Models with 2–4 State Variables

    7.5. Eutrophication Models II: A Complex Eutrophication Model

    7.6. Model of Subsurface Wetland

    7.7. Global Warming Model


    Appendix 1

    8: Ecotoxicological Models

    8.1. Classification and Application of Ecotoxicological Models

    8.2. Environmental Risk Assessment

    8.3. Characteristics and Structure of Ecotoxicological Models

    8.4. An Overview: The Application of Models in Ecotoxicology

    8.5. Estimation of Ecotoxicological Parameters

    8.6. Ecotoxicological Case Study I: Modelling the Distribution of Chromium in a Danish Fjord

    8.7. Ecotoxicological Case Study II: Contamination of Agricultural Products by Cadmium and Lead

    8.8. Fugacity Fate Models

    Illustration 8.1

    Illustration 8.2

    9: Individual-Based Models

    9.1. History of Individual-Based Models

    9.2. Designing Individual-Based Models

    9.3. Emergent versus Imposed Behaviors

    9.4. Orientors

    9.5. Implementing Individual-Based Models

    9.6. Pattern-Oriented Modelling

    9.7. Individual-Based Models for Parameterizing Models

    9.8. Individual-Based Models and Spatial Models

    9.9. Example

    9.10. Conclusions


    10: Structurally Dynamic Models

    10.1. Introduction

    10.2. Ecosystem Characteristics

    10.3. How to Construct Structurally Dynamic Models and Definitions of Exergy and Eco-exergy

    10.4. Development of Structurally Dynamic Model for Darwin’s Finches

    10.5. Biomanipulation

    10.6. An Ecotoxicological Structurally Dynamic Models Example


    11: Spatial Modelling

    11.1. Introduction

    11.2. Spatial Ecological Models: The Early Days

    11.3. Spatial Ecological Models: State-of-the-Art




Product details

  • No. of pages: 350
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2011
  • Published: January 10, 2011
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780444535672
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444535689

About the Author

S.E. Jorgensen

Affiliations and Expertise

DFH, Miljokemi, Copenhagen, Denmark

Ratings and Reviews

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  • KonstantinaAgiadi Wed Sep 18 2019

    A nice and simple overview

    The book is written in simple and clear language, which helps. I would have liked a bit more detail on some of the most commonly applied methods. Also, the text was too simplistic in general for my taste.