Luz Piedad Romero Duque


LÍNEAS DE INVESTIGACIÓN:   Servicios ecosistémicos, Ecología de ecosistemas, Ecología del paisaje.

FACULTAD:  Ciencias Ambientales e Ingenierías



Soy Doctora en Ciencias Biológicas de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México; Magister en Ciencias Biológicas de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia en el área de Ecología Terrestre; Especialista en Docencia para la Educación Superior de la U.D.C.A y Bióloga de la Pontificia Universidad Javeriana. Mi actividad académica ha sido de carácter interdisciplinar colaborando en actividades de docencia en pregrado y posgrado con diferentes disciplinas como la arquitectura y el diseño industrial, la ingeniería civil, la planeación territorial y la gestión ambiental. Inicié mi actividad investigativa en la ecología de poblaciones y comunidades, durante mi doctorado desarrollé interés por la ecología de los ecosistemas, especialmente de los ecosistemas secos. Mi principal línea de interés es el estudio de la estructura y funcionamiento de los ecosistemas naturales y culturales a diferentes escalas espacio-temporales, y el análisis de estos ecosistemas desde la perspectiva de los servicios ecosistémicos.


The PREDICTS database: a global database of how local terrestrial biodiversity responds to human impacts
Fecha de publicación: 02/12/2014

Biodiversity continues to decline in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures such as habitat destruction, exploitation, pollution and introduction of alien species. Existing global databases of species’ threat status or population time series are dominated by charismatic species. The collation of datasets with broad taxonomic and biogeographic extents, and that support computation of a range of biodiversity indicators, is necessary to enable better understanding of historical declines and to project – and avert – future declines. We describe and assess a new database of more than 1.6 million samples from 78 countries representing over 28,000 species, collated from existing spatial comparisons of local-scale biodiversity exposed to different intensities and types of anthropogenic pressures, from terrestrial sites around the world. The database contains measurements taken in 208 (of 814) ecoregions, 13 (of 14) biomes, 25 (of 35) biodiversity hotspots and 16 (of 17) megadiverse countries. The database contains more than 1% of the total number of all species described, and more than 1% of the described species within many taxonomic groups – including flowering plants, gymnosperms, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, beetles, lepidopterans and hymenopterans. The dataset, which is still being added to, is therefore already considerably larger and more representative than those used by previous quantitative models of biodiversity trends and responses. The database is being assembled as part of the PREDICTS project (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems – We make site-level summary data available alongside this article. The full database will be publicly available in 2015.

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The database of the PREDICTS (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems) project
Fecha de publicación: 05/01/2017

The PREDICTS project—Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems (—has collated from published studies a large, reasonably representative database of comparable samples of biodiversity from multiple sites that differ in the nature or intensity of human impacts relating to land use. We have used this evidence base to develop global and regional statistical models of how local biodiversity responds to these measures. We describe and make freely available this 2016 release of the database, containing more than 3.2 million records sampled at over 26,000 locations and representing over 47,000 species. We outline how the database can help in answering a range of questions in ecology and conservation biology. To our knowledge, this is the largest and most geographically and taxonomically representative database of spatial comparisons of biodiversity that has been collated to date; it will be useful to researchers and international efforts wishing to model and understand the global status of biodiversity.

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Resilience of Soil Properties to Land‐Use Change in a Tropical Dry Forest Ecosystem
Fecha de publicación: 13/02/2018

Land‐use change in tropical dry forests can dramatically alter soil properties, but little is known about their resilience. We assessed soil resilience by examining resistance to, as well as recovery from, pasture use by smallholder farmers in western Mexico. We measured 25 soil and vegetation properties and compared old‐growth forest (OGF) sites and pastures to evaluate resistance to pasture use. We assessed whether those properties recovered to OGF reference values after pasture abandonment by analyzing the trajectories of properties along a chronosequence of secondary vegetation. Finally, we assessed whether recovery of soil properties could be inferred from the recovery of vegetation properties. Nine out of 25 properties differed significantly between the OGF sites and pastures. From these nine nonresistant properties, six (i.e., penetration resistance, soil C concentration, soil C/N, basal area, individual density, rarefied species richness of woody vegetation) showed recovery as a significant positive relationship with forest age. In contrast, surface litter C, litter C/N, and soil available P showed no resistance and no recovery within the successional period examined (up to 35 y). The best vegetation indicator for the recovery of some soil properties was woody species richness. This may suggest that functional differences of colonizing plants matter for recovery after pasture use. Our findings indicate that soil was overall resilient to pasture use, but some properties did not recover synchronously with vegetation properties during succession. Thus, more attention should be paid to soil function, because full ecosystem recovery is often inferred from the recovery of vegetation properties.

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Linking biodiversity, ecosystem services, and beneficiaries of tropical dry forests of Latin America: Review and new perspectives
Fecha de publicación: 18/03/2019

We conducted a systematic literature review to identify and analyze research linking biodiversity, ecosystem services and their beneficiaries in tropical dry forests of Latin America. By assessing 71 studies published in the last 20 years, we addressed two questions: i) when research on links between biodiversity, ecosystem services and beneficiaries began and which of these links have been addressed the most? ii) how these links were addressed? Research on links began in 1997. Studies have been carried out mostly on a local scale and lasted for one year or more. Links between biodiversity and ecosystem services were the most frequently addressed (24% of total studies) considering biodiversity as a regulator of ecosystem processes. Plants and mammalsabundance and richness were mainly linked with regulating and provisioning services. While these links have started to be addressed, only five studies actually linked the three components. It is necessary to redirect efforts towards studies effectively linking ecosystem services and beneficiaries, a link that still remains scarcely addressed. The current challenge for research is to incorporate the beneficiaries into the study of ecosystem services in tropical dry forests of Latin America and fill the information gaps by promoting long-term studies at larger spatial scales

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Ecosystem services research in Latin America: The state of the art
Fecha de publicación: 01/12/2012

Ecosystem services science has developed at a fast rate in Latin America, a region characterized by a high biological and cultural diversity, strong emphasis in foreign investment, and high socioeconomic inequities. Here we conducted the following analyses at the regional and national scales: (1) how and when did the study of ecosystem services arise in each country?, (2) what is our present understanding of ecosystem service supplydelivery to societies, and social and economic values?, (3) what is the state of the art in integrating tradeoffs among services and in using interdisciplinary perspectives?, and (4) how has ecosystem service research been connected to policy design or management for sustainability? A large literature review (>1000 references) showed that in Latin America ES supply and links to policy have been the most frequently assessed. Overall, emphasis has been placed on a few services, namely carbon and water. Payments for ecosystem services have received considerable attention in the region, though with strong differences across nations and with important limitations in their application. The future of the ecosystem service paradigm in Latin America will largely depend on its capacity to demonstrate effectiveness in meeting both conservation and development goals.

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