Research at the Institute of Zoology is organised into five Research Themes:
- Behavioural & Population Ecology
- Biodiversity & Macroecology
- Evolution & Molecular Ecology
- People, Wildlife and Ecosystems
- Wildlife Epidemiology
Each Research Theme group comprises of several research fellows, post-doctoral research assistants and PhD students, and is lead by a senior research fellow. Most Institute staff work across several Research Themes in broad internal and external collaborations
Biodiversity & Macroecology
Biodiversity is the variation of life at all levels of biological organisation. Macroecology deals with the study of relationships between organisms and their environment at large spatial scales to characterise and explain statistical patterns of abundance, distribution and diversity.
This research theme is led by Chris Carbone and brings together researchers who believe that an understanding of the evolutionary and ecological basis of biodiversity is necessary in order to conserve it effectively.
Read more about: Biodiversity & Macroecology
People, Wildlife & Ecosystems
As human populations continue to grow and pressures on natural systems increase, effective management of natural resources will increasingly depend on a sound understanding of the interactions between people, wildlife and ecosystems. Humans are a component of natural systems, and need to be understood in this context if we are to be able to develop solutions to mitigate against these pressures.
This research theme, led by Sarah Durant , explores these interactions and contributes to our scientific understanding of the ecological and socioeconomic processes that underpin them. This, in turn, can be used to help develop policy and management solutions that best conserve biodiversity while ensuring sustainable benefits to local communities and society.
Read more about People, Wildlife and Ecosystems .
Behavioural & Population Ecology
Our research in behavioural ecology and population ecology has two major interlinked aims:
- To test fundamental hypotheses in behavioural and population ecology
- To use our knowledge of the behavioural and population ecology of wild species, and the human populations that interact with them, to inform conservation policy and management.
Read more about: Behavioural & Population Ecology
Evolution & Molecular Ecology
The work of the genetics groupuses genetic methodology to address basic questions in evolutionary biology. We also use genetic approaches to better understand how the evolutionary potential of threatened species can be maintained and how genetic tools can be applied in the formulation of conservation strategies.
Read more about: Evolution & Molecular Ecology
This theme, led by Andrew Cunningham, involves the identification and investigation of wildlife diseases (both infectious and non-infectious); ranging from basic studies on pathogens through to the assessment of their likely impacts on human health and biodiversity conservation.
Read more about: Wildlife Epidemiology