Global Change and Conservation

Global change and conservationOur planet is experiencing major environmental change, much of which is human-induced. Researchers in our school explore and predict the effects of various forms of environmental change on the  condition, functioning and adaptive capacity of biological systems from populations to ecosystems. We do so at all levels of biological organisation – from calciferous algae as indicators of ocean acidification, to vital food crops in the developing world; and across all environments  – from the Antarctic to the Australian outback. We examine patterns from the past and present, apply quantitative approaches  to project alternative futures, and inform conservation-policy and management debates.

We study multiple forms of global change and their interactions including climate change, overexploitation of resources, disease, pollution, biological invasion and habitat fragmentation and degradation. We also work on approaches and techniques for ensuring robust policy and management interventions  in the face of such change, including decision theory, evidence-based management and bioindicator development.


Chown, Steven
Steven is engaged in biogeographic and macroecological studies, macrophysiology, spatial ecology, and invasion biology. Translation of science into policy is a major focus.
McGeoch, Melodie
Melodie is interested in spatial patterns in biodiversity, how these are impacted by global change and how biodiversity can most effectively be estimated and monitored.
Clarke, Rohan
Rohan's research focusses on movement ecology, with interests in conservation management of marine and terrestrial birds, and pathogen transmission pathways in avian MGEation corridors.
Sunnucks, Paul 
Paul's group applies field biology, ecological genomics/genetics and spatial environmental analysis to the population biology of animals under natural and human-impacted.
Marshall, Dustin
Dustin is an evolutionary ecologist who uses marine invertebrates as a model for understanding the phenotypic links among life-history stages and the eco-evolutionary dynamics of marine communities.
Cook, Carly
Carly is interested in improving the use of scientific information in environmental decisions by applying a range of applied research questions and development of decision-support tools.
Moore, Joslin
Joslin's research uses ecological theory and models to solve and inform applied ecological problems that will aid in the conservation and sustainable management of natural.
Gleadow, Ros
Ros investigates the effect of environmental variables such as drought and elevated carbon dioxide on the partitioning of resources between growth and defence in plants.
Beardall, John
John researches metabolic processes in microscopic photosynthetic organisms. His focus is cyanobacterial and algal ecophysiology and ecology, especially in relation to global change.
Reina, Richard
Richard investigates ecophysiology of animals including sharks, penguins, turtles and frogs, and is interested in their responses to environmental challenge with application to conservation.
Sgrò, Carla 
Carla researches the genetic basis of adaptation to environmental change. How evolutionary processes can be incorporated into biodiversity conservation is a focus.
Hodgins, Kay
Kay researches plant evolution in human altered environments, plant adaptation to climate change, crop evolution and the evolution of plant sexual systems.
Hall, Matt 
Matt is an evolutionary biologist who studies the genetics of host-parasite interactions, life-history tradeoffs and ageing using Daphnia as a model system.
Chapple, David
Dave's research spans invasion biology, behavioural and evolutionary ecology, population and conservation genetics, phylogenetics and phylogeography.