Professor Jonathan Rhodes

Professor

School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Faculty of Science
j.rhodes@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 56838

Overview

Jonathan is a landscape ecologist working at the interface between ecology and policy to improve and better understand decision-making for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services. He is based in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science at The University of Queensland (UQ). He received his PhD in Ecology in 2005 and has been employed at UQ since 2007. Jonathan has a particular interest in understanding how dynamic landscape and climate change drives biodiversity and ecosystem services outcomes, and the implications of this for effective environmental decision-making and policy setting under uncertainty. He is also interested in optimal monitoring and quantifying the benefits of investment in learning and research for environmental outcomes. His work has application across a wide range of scales from local to global and in both urban and rural landscapes.

Research Interests

  • Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services
    Jonathan is interested in understanding the effect of human-caused landscape change and climate change on wildlife, biodiversity and ecosystem services. He works on developing landscape scale models of how landscape structure influences biodiversity and ecosystem services in both rural, urban and coastal landscapes. By integrating these models with data this work has answered critical questions about the interaction between threat processes and ecological and social processes operating at a range of scales.
  • Decision Analysis and Policy
    A key focus of Jonathan’s work is the application of our understanding of drivers of change in environmental systems to decision-making a policy formulation. He uses decision science approaches to achieve this and works closely with end-users (especially government) to maximise impact and uptake. This work has made important contributions to understanding appropriate management and policy for koalas, coastal planning, and linear infrastructure planning.
  • Value of Information and Optimal Monitoring
    Environmental policy and planning relies on information to make informed choices and Jonathan is interested in how we can better design investment in monitoring data and research to maximise environmental benefits. His work in this area focusses on monitoring design in complex socio-ecological systems and how research should be prioritised in these systems.

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts (Hons), Kent.
  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor of Science (hons), University of East Anglia

Publications

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Grants

View all Grants

Supervision

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • Environmental offsets have become a dominant policy tool for compensating for the environmental impacts of development. There has been considerable attention paid to understanding the environmental consequences of alternative offset policy settings. However, the economic consequences of offset policy settings have been largely ignored. As a consequence, we understand very little about the trade-offs that occur in environmental offsetting. Examples of these trade-offs include trade-offs between economic costs and environmental benefits, and trade-offs between different types of environmental benefits (including ecosystem services) and the equity in the distribution of those benefits and costs.

    This PhD project will aim to explore the complex trade-offs that occur in environmental offsetting using an existing modelling framework that we have developed. The modelling framework has been developed for South-East Queensland, Australia but could be extended to other areas and for multiple ecosystem services. The outputs of the project will include making important policy contributions to the offset debate and have the potential to influence how future environmental offsets are developed.

    The ideal student will have quantitative modelling skills (or the ability and interest to learn these skills) and interests in environmental policy, environmental economics, biodiversity conservation, or ecosystem services. This project is a collaborative project between the University of Western Australia (UWA), Perth and the University of Queensland (UQ), Brisbane and the successful student could be based in either of these locations. Prior to beginning the PhD the successful student must also obtain a postgraduate scholarship (or equivalent) from either the University of Western Australia (http://www.scholarships.uwa.edu.au/futurestudents/postgrad) or the University of Queensland (https://graduate-school.uq.edu.au/scholarships).

    For more information please contact Dr Sayed Iftekhar (mdsayed.iftekhar@uwa.edu.au) or Assoc. Prof. Jonathan Rhodes (j.rhodes@uq.edu.au).

    Background reading

    GORDON, A., LANGFORD, W. T., WHITE, M. D., TODD, J. A. & BASTIN, L. 2011. Modelling trade offs between public and private conservation policies. Biological Conservation, 144, 558-566.

    HABIB, T. J., FARR, D. R., SCHNEIDER, R. R. & BOUTIN, S. 2013. Economic and ecological outcomes of flexible biodiversity offset systems. Conservation Biology, 27, 1313-1323.

    MARON, M., IVES, C. D., KUJALA, H., BULL, J. W., MASEYK, F. J., BEKESSY, S., GORDON, A., WATSON, J. E., LENTINI, P. E. & GIBBONS, P. 2016. Taming a wicked problem: Resolving controversies in biodiversity offsetting. BioScience, 66, 489-498.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book

Book Chapter

  • Rhodes, Jonathan R. (2015). Mixture models for overdispersed data. Ecological statistics: contemporary theory and application. (pp. 284-308) edited by Gordon A. Fox, Simoneta Negrete-Yankelevich and Vinicio J. Sosa. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672547.001.0001

  • McAlpine, Clive A., Seabrook, Leonie, Morrison, Tiffany H. and Rhodes, Jonathan R. (2013). Strengthening landscape ecology's contribution to a sustainable environment. Landscape Ecology for Sustainable Environment and Culture. (pp. 21-37) edited by Bojie Fu and K. Bruce Jones. Dordrecht , The Netherlands: Springer Netherlands. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-6530-6_2

  • McAlpine, Clive A., Bowen, Michiala E. and Rhodes, Jonathan R. (2010). Landscape and regional perspectives from eastern Australia. Temperate woodland conservation and management. (pp. 231-240) edited by David Lindenmayer, Andrew Bennett and Richard Hobbs. Collingwood, Melbourne: CSIRO Publishing.

  • Jonathan R. Rhodes, McAlpine, Clive A., Zuur, A. F., Smith, G. M. and Ieno, E. N. (2009). GLMM applied on the spatial distribution of koalas in a fragmented landscape. Mixed effects models and extensions in ecology with R. (pp. 469-492) edited by Alain F. Zuur, Elena N. Ieno, Neil J. Walker, Anatoly A. Saveliev and Graham M. Smith. New York , U.S.A.: Springer.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • Environmental offsets have become a dominant policy tool for compensating for the environmental impacts of development. There has been considerable attention paid to understanding the environmental consequences of alternative offset policy settings. However, the economic consequences of offset policy settings have been largely ignored. As a consequence, we understand very little about the trade-offs that occur in environmental offsetting. Examples of these trade-offs include trade-offs between economic costs and environmental benefits, and trade-offs between different types of environmental benefits (including ecosystem services) and the equity in the distribution of those benefits and costs.

    This PhD project will aim to explore the complex trade-offs that occur in environmental offsetting using an existing modelling framework that we have developed. The modelling framework has been developed for South-East Queensland, Australia but could be extended to other areas and for multiple ecosystem services. The outputs of the project will include making important policy contributions to the offset debate and have the potential to influence how future environmental offsets are developed.

    The ideal student will have quantitative modelling skills (or the ability and interest to learn these skills) and interests in environmental policy, environmental economics, biodiversity conservation, or ecosystem services. This project is a collaborative project between the University of Western Australia (UWA), Perth and the University of Queensland (UQ), Brisbane and the successful student could be based in either of these locations. Prior to beginning the PhD the successful student must also obtain a postgraduate scholarship (or equivalent) from either the University of Western Australia (http://www.scholarships.uwa.edu.au/futurestudents/postgrad) or the University of Queensland (https://graduate-school.uq.edu.au/scholarships).

    For more information please contact Dr Sayed Iftekhar (mdsayed.iftekhar@uwa.edu.au) or Assoc. Prof. Jonathan Rhodes (j.rhodes@uq.edu.au).

    Background reading

    GORDON, A., LANGFORD, W. T., WHITE, M. D., TODD, J. A. & BASTIN, L. 2011. Modelling trade offs between public and private conservation policies. Biological Conservation, 144, 558-566.

    HABIB, T. J., FARR, D. R., SCHNEIDER, R. R. & BOUTIN, S. 2013. Economic and ecological outcomes of flexible biodiversity offset systems. Conservation Biology, 27, 1313-1323.

    MARON, M., IVES, C. D., KUJALA, H., BULL, J. W., MASEYK, F. J., BEKESSY, S., GORDON, A., WATSON, J. E., LENTINI, P. E. & GIBBONS, P. 2016. Taming a wicked problem: Resolving controversies in biodiversity offsetting. BioScience, 66, 489-498.