Research Interest 

My research background is in eco-physiology and my general research interest is to bridge from observed patterns to a mechanistic understanding of the underlying biological processes in plants and ecosystems, and their interaction with the abiotic environment across different scales. I use a wide range of techniques to assess patterns and responses in plant growth and development from leaf- to landscape level.

My work in the Physiological Plant Ecology group is to identify long-term physiological changes in a wide range of plant species during the past century as a response to environmental changes using the stable carbon and oxygen isotope ratios in archived plant materials, in order to develop geospatial and physiological, process-based models (part of the HYDROCARB project).


2019 – ongoing Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Basel, Physiological Plant Ecology Group
2016 – 2019 Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Harvard University, Department of Organismic & Evolutionary Biology
2013 – 2016 HerbariaDigitalization Project Manager, University of Basel, Herbaria Basel
2014 – 2015 Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Basel, Institute of Botany
2009-2014 PhD in Botany, University of Basel, Institute of Botany
2006-2018 MSc in Ecology, University of Basel, Institute of Botany
2003-2006 BSc in Biology, Major in Animal and Plant Biology, University of Basel

Key Publications

Chiang C, Olsen JE, Basler D, Bånkestad D, Hoch G (2019) Latitude and weather influences on sun light quality and the relationship to tree growth. Forests 2019

Rademacher TT, Basler D, Eckes-Sheperd EH, Fonti P, Friend AD, Le Moine JM, Richardson AD (2019) Using phloem transport manipulation to advance understanding of carbon dynamics and use in trees. Front. For. Glob. Change 2:11

Carbone M, Seyednasrollah B, Rademacher TT, Basler D, Le Moine JM, Beals S, Beasley J, Greene A, Kelroy J, Richardson AD (2019) Flux Puppy - an open-source software application and portable system design for low-cost manual measurements of CO2 and H2O fluxes. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 274:1-6

Hufkens K, Basler D, Milliman T, Melaas E, Richardson AD (2018) An integrated phenology modelling framework in R. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 9:1276–1285

Körner C, Basler D, Hoch G, Kollas C, Lenz A, Randin C, Vitasse Y, Zimmermann NE (2016) Where, why and how? Explaining the low temperature range limits of temperate tree species. Journal of Ecology 10.1111/1365-2745.12574

Basler D (2016) Evaluating phenological models for the prediction of leaf-out dates in six temperate tree species across central Europe. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 217: 10-21

Basler D, Körner C (2014) Photoperiod and temperature responses of bud swelling and bud burst in four temperate forest tree species. Tree Physiology. 34: 377-88

Vitasse Y, Basler D (2014) Is the use of cuttings a good proxy to explore phenological responses of temperate forests in warming and photoperiod experiments? Tree Physiology 34: 174-183

Vitasse Y, Basler D (2013) What role for photoperiod in the bud burst phenology of European beech. European Journal of Forest Research 132:1-8

Basler D, Körner C (2012) Photoperiod sensitivity of bud burst in 14 temperate forest tree species. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 165:73-81

Körner C, Basler D (2010) Phenology under global warming. Science 327:1461-1462

Körner C, Basler D (2010) Warming, Photoperiods, and Tree Phenology - Response. Science 329:278




David Basler

University of Basel
Schönbeinstrasse 6
4056 Basel

Office No.: 01.003