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Professor Chris Gilligan

Professor Chris Gilligan

Professor of Mathematical Biology

Head of the Epidemiology and Modelling Group


Research themes

Bioenergy:

Epidemiology and modelling of ecological impacts and disease control

Resource Dynamics:

Departments and Institutes

Department of Plant Sciences:

Research Interests

  • Epidemiology and modelling of ecological impacts and disease control

 

Chris Gilligan is Professor of Mathematical Biology and leads the Epidemiology and Modelling Group that brings together biologists, mathematicians, physicists and statisticians within the Department of Plant Sciences. His research is focused on 'Disease in changing landscapes' which maps onto the effects of introducing bioenergy crops into the landscape. Current research is focused on establishing and testing a theoretical framework that identifies the mechanisms that control invasion, persistence, scale and variability of epidemics within changing agricultural and natural landscapes. Applications range from largescale
pandemics (sudden oak death, citrus canker, cassava mosaic), through pesticide resistance and genetical control to biocontrol in sustainable agricultural systems, with related work on pest and weed dynamics and the spread of genetically-modified organisms. The research involves a synthesis of
epidemiological theory, population genetics, landscape ecology and economic modelling, drawing on methods from statistical physics, as well as a complementary experimental programme involving field and
laboratory microcosms to test the models. The framework is used to identify methods that improve the efficiency of disease control and reduce the risks of failure.