Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences (Silwood Park)

Professor of Ecology



+44 (0)20 7594 2223r.ewers




1.4Centre for Population BiologySilwood Park





I take a broad, systems approach to forest ecology. My research goal is to understand how forest ecosystems work in their entirety and how the ecological processes that underpin these ecosystems are altered by human actions. Historically, this has been an empirical enterprise and has centred on the Stability of Altered Forest Ecosystems (SAFE) Project in Sabah, Malaysia, which I established in 2010.  More recently, we have been moving towards process-based modelling of tropical forest ecosystems. An over-arching goal is to tie together these models to generate a Virtual Rainforest: a general ecosystem model replicating all of the key physical and biotic components of a rainforest.

Research focus



Milodowski DT, Coomes DA, Swinfield T, et al., 2021, The impact of logging on vertical canopy structure across a gradient of tropical forest degradation intensity in Borneo, Journal of Applied Ecology, ISSN:0021-8901

Huaraca Huasco W, Riutta T, Girardin CAJ, et al., 2021, Fine root dynamics across pantropical rainforest ecosystems, Global Change Biology, Vol:27, ISSN:1354-1013, Pages:3657-3680

Ewers RM, Nathan SKSS, Lee PAK, 2021, African swine fever ravaging Borneo's wild pigs, Nature, Vol:593, ISSN:0028-0836, Pages:37-37

Boyle MJW, Bishop TR, Luke SH, et al., 2021, Localised climate change defines ant communities in human-modified tropical landscapes, Functional Ecology, Vol:35, ISSN:0269-8463, Pages:1094-1108

Nunes MH, Jucker T, Riutta T, et al., 2021, Recovery of logged forest fragments in a human-modified tropical landscape during the 2015-16 El Nino, Nature Communications, Vol:12, ISSN:2041-1723, Pages:1-11

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