Greetings! I am a professor of Animal Ecology in the Department of Health and Environmental, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU). I am interested in the connection between three fields of ecology: behavioral ecology, community ecology and conservation biology. My research focuses on how behavior, particularly communication, affects the interactions between species, and how knowledge about such interactions can be integrated into conservation and management plans. Since moving to China in 2012, I have been fortunate to explore new subjects relevant to conservation, such as fragmentation, ecotoxicology, and agroecology. I love birds and primarily work on them, although I appreciate the diversity of insects, and have studied communication in bees (although I do not think I will try to study alarm pheromone again with stinging creatures).
My education background includes a bachelor’s from Harvard College (1997), and a Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (2005). I have held postdoctoral fellowships at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology and the National Science Foundation (USA), and lectured at the University of San Diego, and the University of California, San Diego. In China, I have worked as an Associate Professor at the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences (2012-2014), and as a Professor at Guangxi University (2014-2022) and now XJTLU (2022-). I am the first author of “Mixed-species Animal Groups” (Academic Press, 2017), the only book on this topic, and have contributed to more than 110 scientific articles in a wide variety of scientific journals.
I enjoy mentoring graduate students as I find research is a rewarding intellectual pursuit. I also hope by developing the careers of my students to positively influence conservation. For courses I have taught ecology and environmental science, as well as experimental design and statistics in four institutions in the United States, three in China, and at a variety of workshops in Sri Lanka and Papua New Guinea. I am also interested in encouraging international collaboration in environmental science, and I am excited to able to pursue this interest at Department of Health and Environmental Sciences, XJTLU.
Courses at HES, XJTLU
ENV 113 (Fall semester): Introduction to Ecology, Evolution and Earth Systems
ENV 112 (Spring semester): Quantitative Field Skills, Data Collection and Analysis for Environmental Scientists
I am currently recruiting MRes (Research Masters) and FYP (Final Year Project) students. E-mail me for an appointment and let's talk!