Principal Investigator

William Laurance


William Laurance is Distinguished Research Professor and an Australian Laureate at James Cook University, in Cairns, Australia. He also holds the Prince Bernhard Chair in International Nature Conservation at the University of Utrecht, Netherlands, is a research associate at Harvard University and the Smithsonian. Details on Professor Laurance’s stellar track record and research focus can be found here.

Ph.D. Students

Betsy Yaap

betsyBetsy Yaap had an obsession at age 18, a relentless quest to work with orangutans in Borneo. After working with captive orangutans, researching wild orangutans, and starting a conservation program in West Kalimantan, Betsy now finds herself with a slightly broader scope, working on conservation of medium and large bodied mammals (in Sumatra as well as Kalimantan) and the High Conservation Value (HCV) approach to conservation. More on her PhD research focuses on mammal use of riparian corridors in oil palm and acacia landscapes in Sumatra and Kalimantan.

Mason Campbell

Mason CampbellMason Campbell suffers from severe plant addiction and spends his time harassing green things as much as possible. He is passionate about all things flora and does his best to be involved in whatever plant thing is going on at the time. His current work is based on the Atherton Tablelands where he focuses on the impacts of rainforest fragment size and climate change upon tree and liana interactions. More on Mason’s prior work and his current research can be found here.

Nandini Velho

IMG_9712Nandini Velho was born on a bright sunny day by the beautiful sea side State of Goa, India. She has remained fascinated with wildlife ever since, and has got hitched to the hot, sunny, humid tropical forests of India. She has worn different thinking caps – doing both pure and applied research, writing for children as well as scientists, engaging with field level park managers as well as national level policy makers. More about where her magic shoes have taken her can be found here.


 Reuben Clements

Reuben clementsReuben Clements hails from the concrete jungle of Singapore, but has decided to reside in neighbouring Malaysia after falling for the charms of her rainforests, beaches and people. His most rewarding life experience was a two-year stint with WWF, where he led a team that nabbed several poachers and removed many snares from the forests of Northern Peninsular Malaysia. His goal is to lead a purpose-driven life conducting applied research to save threatened M&Ms (Mammals & Molluscs) in their natural habitats.


Brett Scheffers


Brett is a naturalist at heart with a mild case of attention deficit disorder, he generally finds it difficult to focus on one project at a time (the world is too interesting). He is an avid bird, fish and frog watcher. Brett recently took on the role of psueo-Tarzan; climbing trees to study arboreal amphibian and reptile communities in the Philippines. He is also interested in climate change and how urban development affects arboreal guilds but you will have to click here to read more.


Eric Katovai


Eric Katovai's study will focus on the regeneration and recovery dynamics of lowland tropical forests on logged areas in the Solomon Islands. This is of particular importance given that this ecological information on natural forest recovery, will help inform policy and management practices on sustainable forest usage and conservation. More about his research can be found here.






Post Docs

David Edwards

david edwardsDavid Edwards is renowned for not worrying about basic necessities, such as food or a bed, whilst in pursuit of the world’s rarest birds. Referred to by his previous employer as “a nutter”, David spends most of his time prowling remote tropical rainforests. He is passionate about saving biodiversity. His current work is based in Borneo where he focuses on the impacts of logging and oil palm on wildlife. More on David’s breath-taking prior work and his current research can be found here.


 Sean Sloan

Sean Sloan counting lianas-1Sean Sloan is a geographer who wanders the tropical world. He has seen the it up close, and understood each place and time best by its contrast to the next. Sean now steps backwards to see and study the tropics as a larger whole. More on Sean's open invite to collaboration and friendly chats, case-study data and the like can be found here.



Oscar Venter

P9070534Oscar Venter spends much of his time thinking about data, with reason. Right now, there are 1.2 zettabytes of data out there. Huh? Well, that's enough to fill 75,000,000 ipads, which if stacked on your desk would tower 450 kilometers high-well into outer space. So what is being done with this tower of information? Sadly, not nearly enough. Most of it lies neglected, or worse, hoarded on hard drives scattered all over the planet. More about Oscar's research can be found here.

 Ainhoa Magrach

ainhoaAinhoa Magrach's research interests are mainly focused on the impact of human activities over natural ecosystems. She is mainly interested on the changes in land use, such as the fragmentation and destruction of forests due to logging activities both in tropical and temperate areas. More about her research can be found here.



Our Extraordinary Lab Manager

Leanne Shillitoe

Leanne ShillitoeLeanne Shillitoe completes our lab. She is always there for us, to the point where we're sure she'd sometimes like to be somewhere else. She does all the big things and the million little things, and without Leanne we'd have no lab. More about Leanne can be found here.




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General update: 28-Sep-2012
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