Jacob Johansson


Jacob Johansson
(Independent Research Fellow)

Independent research fellow at The Department of Biology, Lund University, Sweden and visiting researcher at Imperial College London (Silwood Park), UK.

Email: jacob.johansson@biol.lu.se Personal Research Webpage Researchgate

Research Summary

I am a theoretical ecologist interested in how organisms and ecological communities adapt to seasonal environments and how they respond to environmental change.

Currently, my research focuses on how bumblebee communities are affected by changing seasonal availability of flower resources owing to a warmer climate or to land-use change. My starting point is the evolutionary perspective and that temporal matching between the stages of a pollinator's life cycle and the flowering period of plants has evolved over long periods of time. Bumblebees have evolved a generalist strategy and use different plants along the season to obtain the continuous inflow of pollen and nectar they need to survive and reproduce. In modern agricultural landscapes, however, the availability of floral resources is highly variable. A warming climate may further lead to changed flowering times in wild plants as well as extended periods of droughts. Using various modelling techniques, I investigate how these changes might affect bumblebees at different temporal and organisational scales. How does food shortage affect colony dynamics? How will shifting flowering seasons affect population dynamics and stability in bumblebee-plant interaction networks? To what extent might different bumblebee species be able to adapt to the new conditions in the long run? By developing theory about the temporal aspects of the pollinator environment I hope to contribute new perspectives on how a globally changing environment influence the diversity of pollinators and the ecosystem services they provide.

My research on plant-pollinator community evolution builds to some extent on my previous theoretical work on ecological and evolutionary responses of birds and plants to climate-driven shifts in phenological mismatch. I also have a long-standing interest in general evolutionary problems such as speciation in variable environments, optimization of life histories and how environmental stochasticity influences evolution of ecological communities. In this context, bumblebee communities provide an ideal study system to test theories about population dynamics, coexistence, optimal life histories and niche evolution.

Current Projects


I am associated with the Richard Gill Lab (Imperial College London, Silwood Park) as a visiting researcher. In my research on plant-pollinator communities I further collaborate with Keith Larsson (Umeå University), Henrik Smith and Jörgen Ripa (Lund University), Nicholas Loeuille (Sorbonne University) and the Swedish National Phenology Network.


The Swedish Research Council (2015-00302) with additional support from Marie Sklodowska Curie Actions, Cofund, Projekt INCA 60039 (International Career Grant)

The Swedish Research Council Formas (942-2015-839).

Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Landscape (BECC) at Lund University and the University of Gothenburg.

Jacob Johansson’s Publications

Find a complete list at my Google Scholar page