Dr Jane Catford

KCL ECS Headshots Nov 2018 at the  on the 05/11/2018. Photo: David Tett

I am a plant community ecologist with interests in biological invasions, environmental change and biodiversity. I am particularly interested in the causes, consequences and processes of vegetation change, and I typically focus on species invasions to tackle such questions. Human actions can directly and indirectly alter plant community composition, with subsequent impacts on ecosystem structure and function. Increased understanding of the processes maintaining community diversity and driving community assembly could be used to alleviate some of the ecological degradation caused by humans.

I am a Reader in Ecology in the Department of Geography at King’s College London and Senior Editor at Journal of Ecology. Before joining KCL in 2018, I held an academic position at the University of Southampton. From 2012-2016, I held a research fellowship with the Australian Research Council, and worked at the University of Melbourne, University of Minnesota and Australian National University. 

Information about other members of the Ecological Change research group is here.

Information about our five-year ERC project, AlienImpacts, is here.

Current positions


  • Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, University of Southampton, UK
  • PhD (Ecology), University of Melbourne, Australia (supervised by Barbara Downes)
  • BA, BSc (Hons) (Ecology, Geography, Politics), Monash University, Australia

Previous positions

  • 2019-2022: Elected staff member of KCL Academic Board
  • 2018-2021: Member of British Ecological Society’s Publications Committee
  • 2020-2021: Programming Group for BES Ecology Live online seminar series
  • 2018-2021: Editor for Conservation Letters 
  • 2016-2021: Associate Editor for Journal of Ecology
  • 2020-2021: Deputy Chair of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Committee, KCL Geography
  • 2019-2021: Deputy Chair of Undergraduate Examinations, KCL Geography
  • 2016-2020: Editor for Neobiota
  • 2018-2019: Visiting Academic, Biological Sciences, University of Southampton.
  • 2016-2018: Lecturer in Community Ecology, Biological Sciences, University of Southampton.
  • 2012-2018: Visiting Fellow, Fenner School of Environment & Society, Australian National University.
  • 2014-2018: Editor for Ecological Society of Australia’s Hot Topics
  • 2012-2016: ARC Research Fellow (ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award; ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions), University of Melbourne.
  • 2012-2015: International Scholar, Department of Ecology, Evolution & Behavior, University of Minnesota.
  • 2009-2012: Research Fellow, School of Botany, University of Melbourne (funding from: Australian Weeds Research Centre; Applied Environmental Decision Analysis; National Climate Change Research Adaptation Facility).
  • 2009-2011: Vegetation Specialist on “River Health & Environmental Flows in China”, Australia-China Environment Development Program.
  • 2003-2008: Environmental consultant on freshwater-based projects (Ecological Engineering Pty Ltd, Stormy Water Solution Pty Ltd).


Funding agencies:

  1. Australian Research Council
  2. European Research Council
  3. European Science Foundation
  4. US National Science Foundation
  5. UK Natural Environment Research Council
  6. BiodivERsA (pan-European biodiversity research funding agency)
  7. The Nature Conservancy
  8. German Federal Ministry of Education and Research
  9. Czech Science Foundation
  10. Swiss National Science Foundation
  11. The Leverhulme Trust, UK
  12. Ecological Society of Australia

Book publishers:

  1. CABI Publishing
  2. Cambridge University Press
  3. Oxford University Press
  4. Wiley-Blackwell


  1. Nature
  2. Science
  3. Nature Communications
  4. Nature Ecology & Evolution
  5. PNAS
  6. Trends in Ecology & Evolution
  7. PLOS Biology
  8. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
  9. BioScience
  10. Current Biology
  11. Ecology Letters
  12. Global Change Biology
  13. Global Ecology & Biogeography
  14. Proceedings of the Royal Society B
  15. Philosophical Transactions B
  16. Ecology
  17. Journal of Ecology
  18. Ecology & Evolution
  19. Journal of Applied Ecology
  20. Ecography
  21. AoB Plants
  22. Biological Conservation
  23. Diversity and Distributions
  24. Oikos
  25. PLoS ONE
  26. Austral Ecology
  27. Ecosystems
  28. Oecologia
  29. Journal of Vegetation Science
  30. Plant Ecology
  31. Hydrobiologia
  32. Plant Ecology and Diversity
  33. Environmental Research
  34. Biological Invasions
  35. Restoration Ecology
  36. Axios
  37. Acta Oecologia
  38. Health Promotion International
  39. PNAS of India
  40. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics
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