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Cambridge Global Food Security

An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge



I am interested in the effects of habitat change on biodiversity and ecosystem functions, and development of possible strategies for conservation. My work is largely focused on tropical agricultural systems and insects, with several projects considering the management of oil palm agroecosystems in Malaysia and Indonesia. Ongoing projects include:

  • Assessing the impacts of selective logging and conversion of forest to oil palm plantations on terrestrial and freshwater invertebrates (with the SAFE Project, the Aquatic Ecology Group, the Insect Ecology Group, and the University of East Anglia).
  • Testing strategies for striking a balance between production and conservation in oil palm-dominated landscapes, including:
    • varying management of understory vegetation, and restoring degraded riparian buffers (with the BEFTA Programme, and the Insect Ecology Group)
    • maintaining riparian buffers of different widths (with the SAFE Project, LOMBOK Project, and DICE Kent)
  • Developing tools to help improve sustainability of tropical agriculture (with the Cool Farm Biodiversity Tool, and the Agroecology Group).
  • Determining the current ‘Grand Challenges’ in entomology (with the Royal Entomological Society, and the Agroecology Group).
Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Zoology
Dr Sarah  Luke

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