pyMANGA: A modular, open and extendable software platform for modeling of forest and vegetation dynamics

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review


Agent-based vegetation models are a widely used tool in ecology, for example, to understand and predict the response of vegetation to environmental change. Models are based on well-established descriptions of processes such as vegetation establishment, growth and mortality. However, they are often developed from scratch, which can be inefficient. Here we present pyMANGA, a free and open-source platform for plant growth modelers. pyMANGA's modular design allows for the combination of different concepts and theories of how plants establish, grow or compete in response to above- and below-ground resource availability. New or alternative modules describing, e.g., competition or facilitation, can be easily added. The interchangeability of modules supports the systematic testing of different hypotheses, e.g., on dominant processes in soil-plant feedback loops. Here we further present the thorough benchmarking strategy to maintain the platform and how pyMANGA can be used to compare models with different levels of abstraction and complexity.


Original languageEnglish
Article number105973
JournalEnvironmental modelling & software
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2024

External IDs

ORCID /0000-0001-6920-136X/work/153654783
unpaywall 10.1016/j.envsoft.2024.105973
Scopus 85187266793
Mendeley eeaa7625-ed5d-3929-b63c-8c68d24e77b2



  • Ecological modeling, Reusability, Individual-based modeling, Benchmarking, Modularity, Building blocks