Australia is a megadiverse continent, containing an array of plants and animals found nowhere else. The Atlas of Living Australia is dedicated to sharing knowledge about these remarkable species, documenting in extraordinary detail the ecosystems they – and we – call home.
To celebrate 10 years of sharing Australia’s unique biota, join us for three talks from leading scientists in ecological research. Come along to hear how new research is growing our understanding of where species live, revealing how those species respond to a changing climate, and showing what future efforts are needed to support healthy ecosystems.
This webinar took place at 1.00pm AEDT, Wednesday 9 December 2020, with 144 live viewers in attendance.
Jane Elith is a professor within the Quantitative Ecology group at the University of Melbourne. She has specialised in species distribution models, focusing on the technical aspects of models, and the interface between the science and its applications. She is interested in how well common methods predict given typical data types, how to test predictive performance in ways relevant to end-use, developing new methods for typical scenarios, how to deal with uncertainty in decision-making based on these models, combining pattern- and process-based methods, and explaining methods for end-users so they know the strengths and limitations of their models.
Tianxiao (August) Hao
Tianxiao (August) Hao is PhD candidate at the Quantitative and Applied Ecology group (QAEco) at the University of Melbourne. August is interested in the biogeography of fungi – a historically understudied taxonomic group in Australia. Using predictive species distribution models in combination with specimen and observation data, his research seeks to answer where fungal species can be found throughout Australia, and how fungal species with similar distributions fall into distinct biogeographic regions. Through his research, August hopes to yield new ecological and biogeographic knowledge to help us better appreciate and conserve the valuable Australian fungi.
Melodie McGeoch is a Professor of Ecology at La Trobe University. Her research spans the measurement and monitoring of biodiversity to biological invasions and the impact of climate change in the Antarctic. She works with the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network and the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services to improve the quality, quantity and value of biodiversity information for policy and management.
Martin Westgate is Science Advisor to the Atlas of Living Australia and a visiting fellow at the Fenner School of Environment & Society at the Australian National University. His research focuses on how scientific information can be used to understand and mitigate human impacts on the environment, via a combination of empirical ecology and evidence synthesis. Martin is also a scientific software developer and occasional frog-watcher.
All ALA webinars are available to view on our YouTube channel along with other video content.