My research interest spans plant species and vegetation science, plant-herbivore interactions, people, nature and livelihoods, and sustainable agro-ecological practices in West Africa. I use a combination field work, common garden experiment, on-farm participatory research, and data synthesis to provide insights into contemporary sustainable development issues in West Africa.

Research Goals

  1. To understand how West African vegetation and plant species are responding to climate change and associated changes in disturbance factors.
  2. To improve understanding of stakeholder’s knowledge and perceptions of natural resource use and conservation across West Africa.
  3. To investigate and promote innovative agro-ecological practices and technologies that enhances productivity, biodiversity conservation and maintenance of ecosystem services in agricultural lands.

Research Themes

  1. Climate change-land use change impacts on tropical biomes
  2. Vegetation dynamics across the forest – savanna transition of West Africa
  3. Roles of plant – herbivore interactions on vegetation dynamics in West Africa
  4. Conservation of nature, ecosystem services and biodiversity in agricultural lands


For an updated list of my publications see my Google Scholar and ResearchGate profiles.

Please contact me ( if you would like a PDF of any of the papers listed. Especially when you encounter a paywall searching for them.

Armani M, Asefa M, Zakari S, Agyekum EO. 2022. Enhancing climate change adaptation and mitigation actions on land in Africa. Future Ecosystems for Africa (FEFA), University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 92 pp.

Nicola Stevens N, Armani M, Archibald S, Bond WJ, Dziba L, Coetzer KL, Kgope B, Pereira L. 2022. Policy Brief: Finding a way forward for Nature-based Solutions in Africa’s grassy ecosystems. Future Ecosystems for Africa (FEFA), University of the Witwatersrand.

Martini F, Aluthwattha SA, Mammides C, Armani M, Goodale UM. 2020. Plant apparency drives leaf herbivory in seedling communities across four subtropical forests. Oecologia,

Armani, M., Goodale U.M., Charles-Dominique, T., Barton, K.E., Yao X., Tomlinson, K.W. 2020. Structural defence is coupled with the leaf economic spectrum across saplings of spiny plants. Oikos, 129:740-752.

Armani, M., Charles-Dominique, T., Barton, K.E., Tomlinson, K.W. 2019. Developmental constraints and resource environment shape early emergence and investment in spines in saplings. Annals of Botany, 124: 1133-1142,

Armani, M., van Langevelde, F., Tomlinson, K.W., Adu-Bredu, S., Djagbletey, G.D., Veenendaal, E.M. 2018. Compositional patterns of overstorey and understorey woody communities in a forest-savanna boundary in Ghana. Plant Ecology & Diversity, 11:451-463.

Other publications

Armani, M. 2020. Personal Profile. New Phytologist, 227(3): 680-682.

Armani, M. 2019. PhD Thesis: Growth-defence strategies of spiny and non-spiny plants across the angiosperm phylogeny, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG), University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS).