Dr Claire Wainwright

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

School of Biological Sciences
Faculty of Science


I use a variety of experimental and analytical approaches to answer pressing questions at the interface of plant community ecology and global change ecology. I am especially interested in how global change drivers such as biological invasions and land-use change interact and accelerate the formation of novel ecosystems.

My postdoctoral research with Margie Mayfield (University of Queensland) and Janneke HilleRisLambers (University of Washington) focuses on quantifying the relative influences of biotic interactions and environmental variation on native and exotic species’ success in the diverse annual plant communities of Western Australia’s York gum woodlands. I am employing experimental and statistical modelling approaches to examine variation in species’ performance along competitive and environmental gradients (natural and anthropogenic), and how this variation can be explained by species' positions in functional trait hierarchies. In addition to determining the impacts of direct interactions, we are also exploring the contribution of seldom-quantified higher order interactions to community structure.

I am especially fond of semi-arid ecosystems, which I have worked in both in California and Western Australia.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland


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