The Evolution and Ecology research group is a highly collaborative, multi-disciplinary community of academics, postgraduate students, and postdoctoral researchers. We aim to understand the evolution and ecology of populations, species, and communities across all levels of biological organisation, from genes through to ecosystems. Key themes within our research include the diversification of species over time, the response of species, populations and communities to global change, and behavioural ecology.
Our interdisciplinary research benefits from strong links with members of the School of Psychology and the School of Computer Science, other research groups within Life Sciences, particularly the Animal Behaviour, Cognition and Welfare group, and through a network of national and international collaborations.
Research Themes and Sustainable Development Goals
Our research is embedded in the following University research themes, a unique set of areas that key into our goals as a civic university undertaking internationally significant research with local relevance, and as researchers engaged in the pursuit of excellence. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals badges represent our research and collaborations in terms of their contribution to the issues the world faces today and into the future.
Sustainable Ecosystems - Ecosystems comprise a large number of feedbacks between their many component organisms and the abiotic environment. We rely on ecosystems to provide food and shelter. How can we understand such complexity and how do we make such systems more resilient to the many and various human impacts?
Strategies for Life - Organisms exhibit remarkable diversity in how they grow, survive, reproduce and die. Understanding the behavioural and physiological strategies they use, how these strategies have evolved, and how they respond to changing social and environmental conditions is key to understanding and preserving this biodiversity, both now and in the future.
The Architecture of Life - Physical factors influence the fitness value of traits and play an important role in the course of evolution. Our research ignores disciplinary boundaries and is linked by the central theme of using physics and engineering principles as a way of understanding complex problems in biology.
Ancient Life - Palaeobiology addresses life’s diversity in the distant geological past. We use the fossil record to untangle models of group diversification, patterns of trait evolution over time, and the response of biota to global- and local-scale environmental changes and to mass extinctions.
The group comprises a unique team of internationally-renowned researchers working at the forefront of, and interface between, animal behaviour, cognition, health, and welfare.
Group research follows a multi-disciplinary and highly collaborative approach to increase understanding of disease characteristically associated with ageing at the molecular level, to improve prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
The group’s vision is to create a strong, dynamic, and engaged research culture to carry out research that has the potential for real world impact at a local, national, and international level.
The research group has a multi-disciplinary approach to answering fundamental questions relating to the characterisation, evaluation, and testing of microorganisms and viruses.