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Introducing the IAVS Vegetation Classification Working Group

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Vegetation classification is a basic requirement of research and conservation. Numerous classifications have been established throughout the world during the 20 th century, but steps toward international classification systems and standards are currently being sought. We introduce here a new working group of the International Association of Vegetation Science, the Vegetation Classification Working Group (VCWG), which will function as a scientific panel devoted to vegetation classification at any spatial or organizational scale, particularly the underlying methodologies and standards, ultimately allowing greater understanding and crosswalks among national classification systems. The VCWG currently has 166 members from 41 countries of six continents, a website for information, established subgroups for specific activities, and initiated a Special Issue on classification for Phytocoenologia. We summarize here the background of the VCWG, current and future activities, and contact information for those interested in becoming involved.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2016

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  • Phytocoenologia (ISSN 0340-269X) is an international, peer-reviewed journal of plant community ecology. It is devoted to vegetation survey and classification at any organizational and spatial scale and without restriction to certain methodological approaches. The journal publishes original papers that develop new vegetation typologies as well as applied studies that use such typologies, for example, in vegetation mapping, ecosystem modelling, nature conservation, land use management or monitoring. Particularly encouraged are methodological studies that design and compare tools for vegetation classification and mapping, such as algorithms, databases and nomenclatural principles. Papers dealing with conceptual and theoretical bases of vegetation survey and classification are also welcome. While large-scale studies are preferred, regional studies will be considered when filling important knowledge gaps or presenting new methods.

    Phytocoenologia was founded by Reinhold Tüxen in 1973 and is published in collaboration with the International Association for Vegetation Science (IAVS; The journal closely cooperates with various subgroups of IAVS and serves as publication outlet for their workshops as well as for selected sessions of the IAVS Symposia. It contains special sections on “Phytosociological Nomenclature” and “Ecoinformatics”. Guest-edited Special Features that fall within the scope of the journal are also published.

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