Oxford Long-Term Ecology Lab

Long-Term Ecology, Biodiversity Conservation, and Environmental Stewardship Technologies

Academic profile

I graduated with a degree in Biology from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, in 2004. I obtained my PhD in palaeoecology and biodiversity conservation at the Botanical Institute of Barcelona (CSIC-ICUB) and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in 2009, after which I joined the Long Term Ecology Lab as a Post Doc.

During my PhD I worked in the Neotropical Guayana Highlands (Tepui mountains, Venezuela). One of the main objectives was to provide the pollen data necessary to understand the past dynamics of these rich ecosystems at longer time scales, and to move forward in putting this evidence in a broader biogeographical framework.

My interests are diverse, ranging from past forest dynamics to the processes by which endemic patterns change over space and time.

Current research

What is the “natural variability” of vegetation in the absence of humans? What impact did past human activities have on the development of the current vegetation types?

To address these questions I am using combination palaeoecological techniques (fossil pollen, micro and macrofossil charcoal and sediment geochemistry) with quantitative analysis and GIS modelling. With these techniques I am able to reconstruct vegetation history and better understand how resilient these ecosystems are to past disturbances.  This information is fundamental for better understanding the future impacts of global change on biodiversity.

I’m currently developing this research in the evergreen forest of the Western Ghats (India) with Professor Kathy Willis and Dr Shonil Bhagwat, and more recently in the Canary Islands (Spain) in collaboration with the Island Ecology Group of La Universidad de la Laguna (Tenerife, Spain).

Another main focus of my current work is to further explore some of the questions raised by my PhD results.

Selected Publications