Robert Briers
Robert Briers

Prof Robert Briers

Professor

Biography

Professor Rob Briers is Professor of Ecology & Biodiversity and Head of Life Sciences in the School of Applied Sciences.

Professor Briers is a spatial ecologist whose research focuses on how and why biodiversity and environments vary across space, from local to global scales, working mainly in aquatic ecosystems. His advanced quantitative and geo-information skills are put to use answering a range of pure and applied questions in ecology, biodiversity and conservation. This work is undertaken in collaboration with a diverse range of colleagues within the university and at a range of national and international institutions.

Professor Briers has extensive experience of undertaking field- and modelling-based research. Current projects focus on carbon flows in upland freshwaters, evaluating conservation value of urban ponds and impacts of anthropogenic noise in aquatic ecosystems. He is also leading research into conservation and valuation of coastal carbon stores (mangroves and seagrass) using Geographical Information Systems and remote sensing techniques.

He is a Director of the Wildlife Information Centre and has extensive links to the biodiversity data and recording sector. Prior to joining Edinburgh Napier, Professor Briers undertook a NERC-funded post-doc at Aberystwyth University using a combination of novel techniques (stable isotopes and harmonic radar tracking) to examine dispersal patterns of adult aquatic insects in upland streams. He gained a PhD from the University of Sheffield on spatial population dynamics of freshwater invertebrates.

Esteem

Advisory panels and expert committees or witness

  • Invited member of Scottish Government Data and the Environment Community of Practice
  • Scotland National Contact Point for European Pond Conservation Network
  • Elected to Steering Committee for European Pond Conservation Network
  • Member of the Scottish Biodiversity Information Forum
  • British Ecological Society representative on Scottish Environment LINK
  • Member of British Ecological Society Scottish Policy Group
  • Co-convenor of Constructed Wetlands Research Group
  • Invited Participant in NERC UKPOPNET Working Group on Protected Area Management
  • Member of the Ponds Advisory Council

 

Conference Organising Activity

  • Organiser of UK Meeting of European Pond Conservation Network
  • Chair of The Wildlife Information Centre Annual Conference
  • Convenor of Royal Entomological Society International Symposium

 

Editorial Activity

  • Associate Editor for Aquatic Conservation: Marine & Freshwater Ecosystems

 

External Examining/Validations

  • External Examiner for MRes Aquatic Ecology by Research, Queen Mary University of London
  • External Examiner for MSc Freshwater and Marine Ecology, Queen Mary University of London

 

Fellowships and Awards

  • Validation of Stable Isotope Analysis: Tweed and Deveron
  • Exploratory study of Freshwater / Marine Origins of Trout Fry in the Deveron Catchment
  • Freshwater / Marine Origins of Trout Fry in the Tweed Catchment
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • Outstanding Publication Award from Energy, Natural Resources and Environment Section of INFORMS (Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences)

 

Grant Reviewer

  • Member of grant review panel for UK Acoustics Network Plus (EPSRC)
  • Grant Reviewer for International Foundation for Science
  • National Science Foundation (USA) Grant Reviewer
  • Grant Reviewer for EU BiodivERsA+ grants
  • Grant Reviewer for EU Joint BiodivERsA and Water JPI call
  • Grant Reviewer: NERC
  • Grant Reviewer: BBSRC
  • Grant Reviewer: International Foundation for Science
  • Grant Reviewer: BBSRC

 

Invited Speaker

  • Invited speaker at European Pond Conservation Network conference: Sound of the suburbs: exploring riparian soundscapes and conservation value of urban ponds
  • Invited speaker at UK and Ireland Lakes Network Conference, Cheshire
  • Oral Presentation at Ecology Across Borders Conference (BES/GFÖ/NecoV/EEF)
  • Conference Presentation at Scottish Freshwater Group Annual Meeting
  • Invited Key Speaker at Second International Sea Trout Symposium, Dundalk
  • Conference Presentation: British Ecological Society Annual Meeting, Edinburgh
  • Conference Presentation at International Congress for Conservation Biology
  • Conference Presentation: Edinburgh Consortium for Rural Research
  • Conference Presentation: Constructed Wetlands Research Group Meeting
  • Conference Presentation: British Ecological Society Annual Meeting
  • Invited Speaker: University of Sheffield Departmental Seminar
  • Invited Speaker at European Pond Conservation Network Conference, Valencia
  • Conference Presentation: European Pond Conservation Network Conference, Toulouse
  • Invited Conference Presentation: International Association of Landscape Ecology Conference, Oxford
  • Conference Presentation: British Ecological Society Annual Meeting
  • Conference Presentation: European Pond Conservation Network Conference, Geneva
  • Invited speaker: Queen Mary University of London Departmental Seminar
  • Conference Presentation: British Ecological Society Annual Meeting
  • Invited speaker at North American Benthological Society Conference

 

Media Activity

  • Media coverage of microplastics research paper
  • Media coverage of microplastics research paper (NewsHub)
  • Media coverage of microplastics paper (Stuff New Zealand)
  • Coverage of paper in the Economist and the Times Higher Education
  • BBC media coverage of letter to NCC
  • Paper on noise effects on mussels featured in several national newspapers
  • Research featured on BBC One Scotland Landward Programme

 

Non-executive Directorship

  • Director of The Wildlife Information Centre (Biological Records Centre for South-East and Central Scotland)

 

Research Degree External Examining

  • External Examiner for PhD Candidate: Heriot-Watt University
  • External Examiner for PhD Candidate: University of Bath
  • External Examiner for PhD Candidate: University of Leeds
  • External Examiner for MPhil Candidate: University of Sheffield
  • External Examiner for PhD Candidate: Queen Mary, University of London
  • External Examiner for PhD Candidate: University of Sheffield

 

Reviewing

  • Reviewer for Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B
  • Reviewer for Science of the Total Environment
  • Reviewer: Aquatic Living Resources
  • Reviewer: Insect Conservation & Diversity
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Ecology of Freshwater Fish
  • Reviewer: Biological Invasions
  • Reviewer: Landscape Research
  • Reviewer: Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science
  • Reviewer: Biology Letters
  • Reviewer: Lake and Reservoir Research and Managment
  • Reviewer: Freshwater Biology
  • Reviewer: Environmental Science and Policy
  • Reviewer: Freshwater Biology
  • Reviewer: Diversity
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Water Research
  • Reviewer: Landscape Ecology
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Ecology of Freshwater Fish
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Fundamental and Applied Limnology
  • Reviewer: Landscape Ecology
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation
  • Reviewer: Freshwater Biology
  • Reviewer: Proceedings of the Royal Society of London
  • Reviewer: Ecological Applications
  • Reviewer: Aquatic Ecology
  • Reviewer: Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research
  • Reviewer: Landscape Ecology
  • Reviewer: Journal of Animal Ecology
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Archiv fur Hydrobiologie
  • Reviewer: Landscape Ecology
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation
  • Reviewer: Ecology
  • Reviewer: Hydrobiologia
  • Reviewer: Aquatic Conservation
  • Reviewer: Journal of Animal Ecology
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation
  • Reviewer: Oecologia
  • Reviewer: Functional Ecology
  • Reviewer: Aquatic Conservation
  • Reviewer: Aquatic Microbial Ecology
  • Reviewer: Conservation Biology
  • Reviewer: Journal of Environmental Management
  • Reviewer: Landscape and Urban Planning
  • Reviewer: Ecography
  • Reviewer: Biological Conservation

 

Date


70 results

Worldwide soundscape ecology patterns across realms

Working Paper
Darras, K. F., Rountree, R., Van Wilgenburg, S., Dong, L., Gasc, A., Chen, Y., …Wanger, T. C. Worldwide soundscape ecology patterns across realms

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Darras, K. F., Rountree, R., Van Wilgenburg, S., Dong, L., Gasc, A., Chen, Y., …Wanger, T. C. Worldwide soundscape ecology patterns across realms
The need for remote, reliable, and scalable monitoring of plummeting biodiversity amidst mounting human pressures on ecosystems and changing climate has sparked enormous inter...

A review of seagrass cover, status and trends in Africa

Journal Article
The recognition of the benefits that seagrasses contribute has enhanced the research interest in these marine ecosystems. Seagrasses provide critical goods and services and su...

The impacts of forestry on breeding curlew distribution – a report to the Forestry Commission

Report
McGrory, R., Briers, R., Findlay, M., & White, P. (2024)
The impacts of forestry on breeding curlew distribution – a report to the Forestry Commission. Forestry Commission
We were commissioned by Forestry Commission (FC) to utilise the large-scale Breeding Waders of English Upland Farmland (BWEUF) data and the wider literature to provide evidenc...

Optimisation of Open-habitat Bird Surveys – a report to the Forestry Commission

Report
Borthwick, M., Findlay, M., Briers, R., & White, P. (2024)
Optimisation of Open-habitat Bird Surveys – a report to the Forestry Commission. Forestry Commission
In the process of offering financial grants to landowners seeking to create new areas of woodland in England, the Forestry Commission (FC) requires surveying of proposed woodl...

An evidence-based approach to identifying resting sites of Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) from camera-trap and field-sign data

Journal Article
Findlay, M. A., Briers, R. A., Ingledew, R. P., & James Ciaran White, P. (2023)
An evidence-based approach to identifying resting sites of Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) from camera-trap and field-sign data. Wildlife Biology, 2023(1), Article e01036. https://doi.org/10.1002/wlb3.01036
Mammals' resting sites (dens) are important features of their ecology. Eurasian otter Lutra lutra resting sites are strictly protected by UK and European legislation and are o...

Effects of pile driving sound playbacks and cadmium co-exposure on the early life stage development of the Norway lobster, Nephrops norvegicus

Journal Article
Stenton, C., Bolger, E., Michenot, M., Dodd, J., Wale, M., Briers, R., …Diele, K. (2022)
Effects of pile driving sound playbacks and cadmium co-exposure on the early life stage development of the Norway lobster, Nephrops norvegicus. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 179, Article 113667. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2022.113667
There is an urgent need to understand how organisms respond to multiple, potentially interacting drivers in today’s world. The effects of the pollutants of anthropogenic sound...

Quantification and Characterisation of Pre-Production Pellet Pollution in the Avon-Heathcote Estuary/Ihutai, Aotearoa-New Zealand

Journal Article
Hunter, E. C., de Vine, R., Pantos, O., Clunies-Ross, P., Doake, F., Masterton, H., & Briers, R. A. (2022)
Quantification and Characterisation of Pre-Production Pellet Pollution in the Avon-Heathcote Estuary/Ihutai, Aotearoa-New Zealand. Microplastics, 1(1), 67-84. https://doi.org/10.3390/microplastics1010005
Plastic pollution is threatening aquatic ecosystems and wildlife. Understanding the characteristics and extent of plastic pollution is the first step towards improving managem...

Pond ecology and conservation: research priorities and knowledge gaps

Journal Article
Hill, M. J., Greaves, H. M., Sayer, C. D., Hassall, C., Milin, M., Milner, V. S., …Wood, P. J. (2021)
Pond ecology and conservation: research priorities and knowledge gaps. Ecosphere, 12(12), https://doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.3853
Ponds are amongst the most biodiverse and ecologically important freshwater habitats globally and may provide a significant opportunity to mitigate anthropogenic pressures and...

Policy Note: The Impact Of Shadow Flicker Or Pulsating Shadow Effect, Caused By Wind Turbine Blades, On Atlantic Salmon (Salmo Salar)

Report
Dodd, J. A., & Briers, R. A. (2021)
Policy Note: The Impact Of Shadow Flicker Or Pulsating Shadow Effect, Caused By Wind Turbine Blades, On Atlantic Salmon (Salmo Salar). Scotland’s Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW

The impact of shadow flicker or pulsating shadow effect, caused by wind turbine blades, on Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar)

Report
Dodd, J. A., & Briers, R. A. (2021)
The impact of shadow flicker or pulsating shadow effect, caused by wind turbine blades, on Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Scotland’s Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW

Current Post Grad projects

Previous Post Grad projects

Non-Napier PhD or MSc by Research supervisions

  • PhD Completion: Dr Lauren McWhinnie (Aquaculture site selection: A GIS-based approach to marine spatial planning in Scotland)