BSc (Hons) University of Queensland, Australia, 1986
PhD University of Queensland, Australia, 1990
I am responsible for curation of the Palaeozoic and Mesozoic plant fossil collections in the Department of Paleobiology, NRM. I supervise visiting researchers, students and postdoctoral fellows working on Palaeozoic and Mesozoic palaeobotany. I am co-responsible for managing the department’s lapidary and photographic laboratories and maintaining the DiVA publications database.
I am interested in multiple aspects of the development of plant life on Earth. I investigate the evolution of novel plant architectures, the application of fossil plants to biostratigraphy, patterns of plant extinction, and floristic responses to environmental change through the Palaeozoic and Mesozoic. This broad interval spans many of the pivotal developments in plant life on Earth.
I am interested in employing novel techniques to examine exceptionally well preserved (permineralized, opalized, or otherwise three-dimensionally preserved) fossils to elucidate the evolutionary history of lesser-studied groups, such as fungi, water moulds, primitive fern groups and Southern Hemisphere seed ferns.
I am also interested in investigating the evolution of plant-animal interactions through the Palaeozoic and Mesozoic. Integrated investigations of adpression floras, charcoalified mesofossil assemblages, and three-dimensionally entombed permineralized peat and sinter deposits offer broad scope for documenting the complex development of plant-animal-fungal interactions through deep time.
I have further interests in understanding the floristic turnover through the Permian and Triassic—a time during which Earth transitioned from icehouse to intense hothouse conditions and experienced perhaps its greatest mass-extinction event.
My research is supported by the Swedish Research council (Vetenskapsrådet: VR), and by the National Science Foundation (USA).