Our People

Michael B Bonsall
Professor of Mathematical Biology

Mike Bonsall is a population biologist and has research interests across a range of disciplines including biodiversity, ecology, evolution, developmental biology, health and economics.

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Elizabeth S Jeffers
Departmental Lecturer

Lizzy completed her DPhil in 2010 for her work in MERG and the Oxford Long Term Ecology Lab using a statistical modelling approach to infer how ecosystems functioned in the past and how this varied over time. She is currently Lecturer in Long Term Ecology in the Department of Zoology and continues to use mathematics to unravel the complex drivers of ecosystem dynamics based on evidence in the fossil record.

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Nina Alphey
Research Associate

Nina is a research associate in the group. She obtained her DPhil as a member of the group and has been a post-doc since 2009.  She was Researcher Co-Investigator on BBSRC-LINK awards (with project partner Oxitec Ltd) "Agricultural insect pest control: combining genetics, resistance management and dynamics" 2014-2017 (also in collaboration with Imperial College) and "Integrating Ecology and Genetics for Genetic Pest Control" 2010-2013.

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Anke Kloock
DPhil Student

Anke completed her BSc and MSc at the University of Kiel, Germany,  investigating the role of C-type Lectins in Caenorhabditis elegans'  immunity. Her PhD investigates the heterogeneity of the pathogen Staphylococcus aureus in the tripartite system of the host C. elegans  and the protective microbe Enterococcus faecalis. She is co-supervised by Kayla King.

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Gregory Lewis
DPhil Student

Gregory completed a medical degree and an MPhil in Public Health (both from Cambridge) and joins the group after time as a junior doctor and public health trainee. His DPhil, supervised by Mike Bonsall, investigates theoretical properties of Global Catastrophic Biological Risks (GCBRs). He also researches similar topics at the Future of Humanity Institute.

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Tom Brewer
BBSRC iCASE DPhil student

Tom completed his Master's in Ecology and Evolution at Imperial College London before joining the Mathematical Ecology Research Group at Oxford as a BBSRC iCASE DPhil student. His research will focus on modelling the efficacy and economics of transgenic release strategies designed to eliminate pest populations and / or manage resistance to insecticide-expressing crops.

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Thomas Rawson
System Biology DTC DPhil Student

Thom is a DPhil student in the Systems Biology Doctoral Training Centre. After finishing his MMath at the University of Reading he began a DPhil that combined his two main research interests of mathematically modelling biological systems and animal welfare science. As such, his project is focussed on modelling the behaviour of Campylobacter within broiler chickens, attempting to better understand an aggressive and populous bacteria. Previous projects include a linear programming approach to optimising ecological green space, modelling the role of miRNA in gene expression, investigating the use of actigraphy in welfare assessment of rhesus macaques, and an optimal control study of dengue treatment methods.

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Cassidy Nelson
DPhil Student

Cassidy completed undergraduate studies in Neuroscience and Developmental Biology and a medical degree from the University of Queensland, and holds a Master of Public Health from the University of Melbourne. She has more than five years experience working in hospital and laboratory-based medicine, human biosecurity and communicable disease public health.

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Dessislava Veltcheva
BBSRC DTP DPhil Student

My name is Dessy and I was born in Bulgaria but grew up in Japan. I completed my bachelor’s degree in Bioarchaeology, in York and master’s in bioinformatics and Systems Biology from University of Manchester.

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Ben Singer
BBSRC DTP DPhil Student

Ben studied physics and philosophy at Oxford, completing a master’s project in theory of evolution with Prof. Ard Louis before joining the Oxford Interdisciplinary Biosciences DTP. After a rotation project on phylodynamics in the statistics department with Prof. Jotun Hein, Ben is now working on a DPhil project in MERG on the effects of cross-immunity on pandemic risk.

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Ceri Watkins
NERC DTP DPhil Student

Ceri completed a Masters in Entomology at Harper Adams in 2014 with a Scholarship from the Royal Entomological Society. Subsequently, she worked at Oxford University Museum of Natural History focusing on the saproxylic (deadwood) beetles of Wytham Woods as part of the TCV Natural Talent scheme. Ceri is one of the founding members of the Dung beetle UK Mapping Project (DUMP).

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Sebald Verkuijl
BBSRC DTP DPhil Student

Sebald is a student on the interdisciplinary bioscience DTP DPhil program. Before starting his DPhil he studied biomedical sciences and worked hands-on in molecular genetics wet-labs, specifically with CRISPR. He is interested in (eukaryotic) synthetic biology, genetic engineering, gene drive, and forming a startup.

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Margaux Steyaert
DPhil student

As part of my PhD thesis I am investigating the diversity and drivers of tropical coral reef cryptofauna communities in the Indian Ocean.

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Mark Roper
BBSRC DTP DPhil Student

Mark studied Biological Sciences at the University of Oxford before joining the BBSRC Oxford Interdisciplinary Bio DTP. He his working with MERG to use theoretical techniques to explore how kin selection may drive the evolution of senescence. 

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Clara Lepard
MSc (Res) Student

Clara Lepard is reading for the MSc (Res) in Zoology. She is a behavioural ecologist interested in predator-prey dynamics in the context of human-dominated landscapes, with a focus on large carnivores and their conservation.

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Maisie Vollans
BBSRC DTP DPhil Student

Maisie studied Biological Sciences at Oxford, before conducting a Master’s in Tropical Forest Ecology at Imperial College, London. Her main interests lie in vector ecology and, as such, her DPhil project is centred around the broad ecological implications of releasing self-limiting GM mosquitoes.  She will approach this using both theoretical mathematical models, and experiments in the laboratory/ field.

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Laura Warmuth
NERC DTP DPhil Student

Laura joined the Environmental Research NERC DTP for her DPhil project on coral reef connectivity in the Indian Ocean. Before coming to Oxford, she studied Biology at the Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen in Germany and moved closer to the water afterwards to study Marine Biology and Ecology at James Cook University in Australia and Papua New Guinea. Hooked on coral reefs and climate change she pursued a Master’s in Tropical Marine Biology at the University of Essex in the UK. Her interests in modelling coral distribution and climate change scenarios led to a Research Associate position at the Duke University Marine Laboratory in North Carolina working on ecological and social impacts of marine protected areas.

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