Dr Tom Webb

Dr Tom Webb

Tel: +44 (0)114 222 4705

Email : t.j.webb@sheffield.ac.uk

Room C215, Alfred Denny Building

Webpage: shefmeme.org/ Twitter: @tomjwebb


Career

Lecturer, Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield (2017- present)

Royal Society University Research Fellow, Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield (2008-2017)

Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow, Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield (2007-2008)

NERC Postdoctoral Research Associate, Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield (2006-2007)

UKPopNet Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of York (2004-2006)

NERC Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Oxford (2003-2004)

Conservation International Postdoctoral Research Associate, Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield (2002-2003)

Key Research Interests

My primary research interest is in the macroecology of marine ecosystems. Particularly, in how and why marine biodiversity is unevenly distributed in space and time. This interest has led me into the realm of biodiversity informatics - using large databases of different facets of marine diversity in order to synthesise the state of knowledge of the world's oceans. My research is currently focused on four major areas:

  1. Global patterns and trends in marine biodiversity - interrogating, linking, and extracting trends from major biodiversity databases using novel statistical methods
  2. Comparative analysis of marine and terrestrial ecosystems - to what extent does ecological theory generalise across realms?
  3. Dynamics of UK marine systems - integrating data and models to understand the provision of ecosystem services from UK seas
  4. The role of energy in driving patterns of deep sea biodiversity

Research Group

Postdoctoral Researcher

Dr Miriam Grace, NERC-Defra Marine Ecosystems Research Programme, Marine macroecology and biodiversity informatics.

PhD Students

Alun Jones, ACCE/NERC/DTP funded, Global trends in marine biodiversity from unstructured data.

Hayley Bannister, University of Sheffield/Cefas funded, Making ecosystem models work for marine environmental policy.

Emma John, APS funded, Environmental variability and the macroecology of marine and terrestrial ecosystems

Loreto Pino, Environmental Drivers of Spatio-Temporal Variability in Chilean Marine Benthic Macrofauna, funded by Advanced Human Capital Program of the National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research CONICYT - Chile.

Professional Activities

Member, UN Pool of Experts for the Ocean
Associate Editor, Journal of Animal Ecology
Editorial Board Member, Biology Letters

Teaching

The majority of my teaching is focused around research-intensive modules, especially as a supervisor of research Projects (APS330) and Dissertations (APS331) in Level 3, and as a Level 4 supervisor (Dissertation APS402 and Project APS406). Project students can contribute directly to my primary research on large-scale patterns and trends in marine biodiversity. I also lecture on marine conservation and conservation conflicts, and run a coursework option on marine spatial planning in the Level 3 course APS349 (Conservation Issues and Management), I lecture on marine climate change in APS313 (Global Change), on marine ecosystems in APS231 (Ecosystems in a Changing Global Environment) and APS124 (Ecosystems, Climate, and Environmental Change), and on deep sea ecosystems for APS325 (Life in Extreme Environments). I am also Director of Postgraduate Taught degrees in APS.

Key Collaborations

My work on marine biodiversity and macroecology relies on the existence of large databases collected by many individuals, but key existing collaborations and interactions involve:

I maintain an up-to-date list of publications and related metrics in my Google Scholar Profile. I also write the blog mola mola on scilogs.com and contribute occasionally to other publications such as The Conversation.