The science that drives CREAF researcher Albert Vilà Cabrera focuses on management and conservation linked to climate change, in the Mediterranean regions. Specifically, it aims to understand how terrestrial vegetation is regulated in a context of global warming and land use change. For this reason, he works in a space of intersection between ecology and biogeography: he approaches a new line of research in which he combines theoretical development with field studies, analysis of large data sets and the latest molecular approaches.
The potential and originality of this work has meant that Albert Vilà Cabrera has recently been distinguished National Geographic Explorer. In the words of this international society, explorers perceive the difference between the world as it is and as it could be, so they act through science, inquiry, education and storytelling to contribute to understanding our land, ocean, wildlife and human cultures and ingenuity. “They are moved by something bigger than themselves”, according to the global organization committed to protecting the environment. One of the main actions of the organization is therefore to invest in a global and diverse community of artists of change in our natural environment.
As a National Geographic Explorer, he is studying the interactions between trees and soil biota (invertebrates and fungi) that sustain ecosystem carbon and nutrient balance in forests altered by past land uses and stress of the drought.