Head of the Forest Ecology and Conservation group,
Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge
Conserving the world’s dwindling biological diversity is one of the most pressing issues facing mankind. David Coomes leads a research group that is actively engaged in addressing these issues, as well as tackling more fundamental ecological questions.
Focusing on forest conservation and ecology, his research uses large databases and modern computational approaches, alongside traditional field approaches. This includes:
- Assessing the impact of land-use change on carbon storage and biodiversity using remote-sensing and GIS approaches, with application to the 2010-targets of the Convention on Biological Diversity
- Measuring carbon storage in forests, and developing mechanisms for reducing deforestation in developing countries through carbon trading;
- Researching the effects of introduced organisms on forest communities and developing control strategies;
- Using geo-referenced plant-location data and global climate surfaces to understand the effects of climate change on biological diversity and trait evolution.
- Developing new biological scaling theories, and confirming their significance by statistical analyses of forest inventory data.
- Parameterising simulation models to examine the responses of forests to environmental change.