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  • 1 University of Trieste Department of Life Sciences Via E. Weiss 2 I-34127 Trieste Italy
  • 2 The University of Western Ontario Department of Biology London Canada N6A 5B7
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It is shown that a similarity theory (ST) formulated in the context of plant community research can lead to methodological developments based on similarity functions. ST can explain and predict ecosystem states, discover links between the physical-chemical environment and the plant communities at different scales of generalization. ST is compared with fuzzy systems theory, which supports similar developments, and it is concluded that fuzzy set theory could be considered as an extension of similarity theory.

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