CURRENT STUDENTS

Ellen Williams

MBiol

Biology | University of Oxford

 

The depleted environmental microbiome of urban areas is thought to underpin the increased risks of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) observed in residents. NCDs place a huge financial and social burden on human economies. Therefore, I am working with Katrina to design a project that assesses how to optimise human-environmental microbiota interactions. My aims are to (1) quantify the level of microbial biodiversity in different urban green spaces, (2) estimate the economic value of microbial biodiversity as providing NCD-mitigation ecosystem services, and then (3) design effective incentives to encourage implementation of urban green space design strategies that promote high levels of microbial biodiversity. This project will have a role in informing optimal health-promoting urban designs, potentially stimulating a new line of microbiome-inspired green infrastructure.

RESEARCH ASSISTANTS

Hannah McCormick, MSc

PREVIOUS STUDENTS

Hernán Caceres

PhD

University of Queensland

Minjerribah or North Stradbroke Island –or Straddie– has important biodiversity, indigenous, and social values, which are negatively impacted by invasive alien species, specifically red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and feral cats (Felis catus). This research project will provide management advice for non-native terrestrial predator management on Minjerribah by:

  1. Gathering local and indigenous cultural knowledge to support species management;

  2. Proposing potential eradication strategies; and

  3. Providing guidance on optimal feral animal control strategies according to community values and management objectives proposed by local stakeholders

The findings will be relevant for optimal invasive species control, and will provide new methods to increase participation from local communities in the early development of management plans that can be applied on other populated Australian islands.

Read Hernán's research here

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