Imperial College London

Professor Iain Colin Prentice

Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences (Silwood Park)

Chair in Biosphere and Climate Impacts



+44 (0)20 7594 2354c.prentice




1.1Centre for Population BiologySilwood Park





My research centres on understanding how plants react to and interact with changes in climate and other aspects of the physical environment. My strategy is based on modelling, seeking to integrate process understanding in ecology and environmental physics with observations of all kinds, including atmospheric measurements and remote sensing with a view to developing sound theoretical and predictive frameworks. I engage in a variety of applications of this science including analysis of the impacts of contemporary climate change on ecosystems and ecosystem services, and of the various feedbacks between the biosphere and climate which have operated on long time scales and which are being activated today by global environmental changes.



  • Ph.D. in Botany, Cambridge University (1977)
  • B.A. in Natural Sciences, Cambridge University (1973)


  • Chair of the ‘AXA Programme in Biosphere and Climate Impacts’ at Imperial College London (2013-);
  • Professor in Ecology and Evolution, Macquarie University, and Professor in Climate and Biosphere Interactions, Imperial College London (2010-);
  • Professor of Earth System Science, University of Bristol, and NERC Research Programme Leader, Quantifying and Understanding the Earth System (2003-2010);
  • Director, Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry, Jena (1997-2003);
  • Professor of Plant Ecology, Lund University (1991-1998);
  • Research Fellow, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (1990);
  • Assistant/Associate professor, Ecological Botany, Uppsala University (1983-1991);
  • Visiting Scientist, Plant Ecology, Utrecht University, The Netherlands (1982-1983);
  • Research Fellow, Geography, University of Southampton (1980-1982);
  • Research Fellow, Plant Biology, University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (1978-1980);
  • Research Fellow, Botany, University of Bergen, Norway (1977-1978);




Research Group website:

Academic visitor

  • Professor Xu Liang (University of Pittsburgh)

Research Associates

  • Dr Beni Stocker


PhD Students

  • Rebecca Thomas
  • Siân Williams
  • Xavier Gilbert
  • Cesar Terrer Moreno




Research Fellows

  • Dr Bradley Evans (Senior research fellow)
  • Dr Trevor Keenan


Research Associates

  • Dr Vincent Maire
  • Dr Han Wang


PhD Students

  • Ning Dong
  • Henrique Togashi
  • Shuangxi Zhou
  • Anna Ukkola
  • Srikanta Dani Kaidala Ganesha

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Prentice IC, Dong N, Gleason SM, et al., 2014, Balancing the costs of carbon gain and water transport: testing a new theoretical framework for plant functional ecology, Ecology Letters, Vol:17, ISSN:1461-023X, Pages:82-91

Stocker BD, Roth R, Joos F, et al., 2013, Multiple greenhouse-gas feedbacks from the land biosphere under future climate change scenarios, Nature Climate Change, Vol:3, ISSN:1758-678X, Pages:666-672

Mackey B, Prentice IC, Steffen W, et al., 2013, Untangling the confusion around land carbon science and climate change mitigation policy, Nature Climate Change, Vol:3, ISSN:1758-678X, Pages:552-557

Gallego-Sala AV, Prentice IC, 2013, Blanket peat biome endangered by climate change, Nature Climate Change, Vol:3, ISSN:1758-678X, Pages:152-155

Harrison SP, Morfopoulos C, Dani KGS, et al., 2013, Volatile isoprenoid emissions from plastid to planet, New Phytologist, Vol:197, ISSN:0028-646X, Pages:49-57

Xu-Ri, Prentice IC, Spahni R, et al., 2012, Modelling terrestrial nitrous oxide emissions and implications for climate feedback, New Phytologist, Vol:196, ISSN:1469-8137, Pages:472-488

Prentice IC, Kelley DI, Foster PN, et al., 2011, Modeling fire and the terrestrial carbon balance, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol:25, ISSN:0886-6236

More Publications