J. Philip Grime

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

John Philip Grime

John Philip Grime FRS is a prominent British ecologist and emeritus professor at the University of Sheffield.[1] He is best known for his CSR theory on plant strategies, for the unimodal relationship between species richness and site productivity (the "humped-back model"), for the Intermediate Disturbance Hypothesis, for the DST classification (dominants, subordinates and transients) and, with Simon Pierce (University of Milan, Italy), universal adaptive strategy theory (UAST) and the twin filter model of community assembly and eco-evolutionary dynamics.

Grime's 1979 book Plant Strategies and Vegetation Processes has been cited more than 1,200 times. Together with many influential scientific papers, it has made him a highly cited scientist.[2] In an interview Grime has stated that "Ecology lacks a Periodic Table", quoting Richard Southwood.[3]


He obtained his PhD from University of Sheffield in 1960 and joined the staff of the Department of Botany in 1961. He worked at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, US from 1963 to 1964. He then returned to the University of Sheffield and joined the Unit of Comparative Plant Ecology, which had been founded in 1961 by professor Ian H. Rorison. Grime served as deputy director of the unit 1964–1989 and as director from 1989.[citation needed]

His work on plant strategies[edit]

His work and his theories are focused on plant strategies, as developed along their evolutionary history. His CSR theory says that each plant species has a blend of the three strategies that he labels C (competitive), S (stress tolerant) and R (ruderal, or rapid propagation). Ruderal strategists thrive in disturbed areas.[4] He has described a method to classify herbaceous vegetations by analysing the importance of the three strategies in the genotypes of the species that are present.[5]


In 1991, Grime became a foreign member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.[6] In 1997, he won the Marsh Ecology Award from the British Ecological Society and was awarded honorary membership of the Ecological Society of America. He was also Distinguished Visiting Ecologist at Pennsylvania State University in that year. In 1998, he became elected Fellow of the Royal Society and honorary doctor at University of Nijmegen. He has been honorary member of the British Ecological Society since 1999. He was the first ever recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Medal (2011) for his outstanding contribution to the intellectual development of plant community ecology.[7]

Selected works[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 13 October 2007. Retrieved 2 October 2007.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) University of Sheffield
  2. ^ "Ecology/Environment category list". ISIHighlyCited.com. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  3. ^ "Interview with Peter Moore in ScienceWatch July/August 1996". archive.sciencewatch.com. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  4. ^ Grime, J. Philip. The Evolutionary Strategies that Shape Ecosystems. Chichester, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
  5. ^ Grime, J. Philip (5 July 1974). "Vegetation classification by reference to strategies". Nature (250): 26–31. doi:10.1038/250026a0.
  6. ^ "J.P. Grime". Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 30 January 2016. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  7. ^ Jason Fridley (2011), Alexander von Humboldt Medal J. Philip Grime (PDF)

External links[edit]