Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences (Silwood Park)

Reader in Biodiversity Theory



+44 (0)20 7594 2242j.rosindell




W1.5KennedySilwood Park





I am a biodiversity theorist with a particular interest in ecological neutral theory and its varied applications. I arrived at Imperial College during January 2012 and I am grateful to the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) for funding me in my current position with a postdoctoral research fellowship and later with an independent research fellowship.  I am also interested in public engagement activities and created the OneZoom tree of life explorer website ( which is now run as an independent registered charity.


Prior to arriving at Imperial I was funded for 3 years with a postdoctoral  research fellowship from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).  I was hosted by the University of Leeds but spent 50% of my time abroad at the University of Groningen and the University of Idaho (Moscow,ID).  My PhD (2005-2008) titled 'Spatially Explicit Neutral Models of Community Assembly' was carried out at the University of Leeds under the supervision of Stephen Cornell and Bill Kunin.  My undergraduate training (2001-2005) was in mathematics at the University of Warwick and had a strong bias towards scientific computing and life science applications.  

Selected Publications

  • Rosindell J and Cornell SJ Universal scaling of species-abundance distributions across multiple scales Oikos 122: 1101–1111 (2013)
  • Rosindell J and Harmon LJ, A unified model of species immigration, extinction and abundance on islands, Journal of Biogeography 40(6): 1107–1118 (2013)
  • Rosindell J and Harmon LJ, OneZoom: A fractal explorer for the tree of life PLoS Biology 10(10) e1001406 (2012)
  • Etienne RS, Rosindell J, Prolonging the past counteracts the pull of the present: protracted speciation can explain observed slowdowns in diversification., Syst Biol, 2012, 61, 204-213
  • Rosindell J, Hubbell SP, He F, Harmon LJ, Etienne RS, The case for ecological neutral theory., Trends Ecol Evol, 2012, 27, 203-208
  • Etienne RS and Rosindell J, Comment on ‘global correlations in tropical tree species richness and abundance reject neutrality, Science 336(6089) 1639 (2012)
  • Rosindell J, Hubbell SP, Etienne RS, The unified neutral theory of biodiversity and biogeography at age ten., Trends Ecol Evol, 2011, 26, 340-348
  • Rosindell J, Phillimore AB, A unified model of island biogeography sheds light on the zone of radiation., Ecol Lett, 2011, 14, 552-560
  • Rosindell J, Cornell SJ, Hubbell SP, Etienne RS, Protracted speciation revitalizes the neutral theory of biodiversity, Ecol Lett, 2010, 716-727
  • Rosindell J and Cornell SJ, Species-area curves, neutral models and long distance dispersal Ecology 90(7): 1743-1750 (2009)
  • Rosindell J and Cornell SJ, Species-area relationships from a spatially explicit neutral model in an infinite landscape.,Ecol Lett, 2007, 10, 586-595



Leroi AM, Lambert B, Rosindell J, et al., 2020, Neutral syndrome., Nat Hum Behav

Gumbs R, Gray C, Böhm M, et al., Global priorities for conservation of reptilian phylogenetic diversity in the face of human impacts, Nature Communications, ISSN:2041-1723

Murphy B, Forest F, Barraclough T, et al., 2020, A phylogenomic analysis of Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae)., Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, Vol:144, ISSN:1055-7903

Thompson S, Chisholm RA, Rosindell J, 2019, Characterizing extinction debt following habitat fragmentation using neutral theory, Ecology Letters, Vol:22, ISSN:1461-023X, Pages:2087-2096

McGill BJ, Chase JM, Hortal J, et al., 2019, Unifying macroecology and macroevolution to answer fundamental questions about biodiversity, Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol:28, ISSN:1466-822X, Pages:1925-1936

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