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Dr Philip Staddon

Profile summary

Professional biography

Employment overview

April 17 – present: Lecturer in Ecology and Environmental Science at The Open University, School of Environment, Earth and Ecosystem Sciences

Oct 14 – April 17: Associate Professor in Environmental Science at the Xi'an Jiaotong - Liverpool University, Suzhou, China

Sep 11 – Sep 14: Research Fellow in Climate Change, Sustainability and Human Health at the University of Exeter Medical School (Truro)

Feb 07 - Nov 10: Quantitative Strategist (Statistical Analyst) & Risk Manager (Research Analyst), Energy Wholesale, E.On UK &  E.On Energy Trading (Düsseldorf, Germany)

Dec 03 - Nov 06: Research Fellow (PDRA) in Community and Ecosystem Ecology at the University of Nottingham

Feb 02 - Dec 03: EC Marie Curie Individual Research Fellow in Ecosystems and Global Environmental Change at the Risø National Laboratory (Roskilde, Denmark)

Feb 99 - Jan 02: Research Fellow (PDRA) in Soil Biodiversity and Carbon Cycling at the University of York

Honorary positions

July 2016:                                Guest Lecturer at the University of Science and Technology Beijing

Nov 2014 - present:                 Honorary Senior Research Fellow in Climate Change and Human Health at the University of Exeter Medical School

Oct 2014 - present:                  Honorary Lecturer in Environmental Science at the University of Liverpool


Research interests

Research interests

I am involved in researching the impact of climate change on human health, but most of my research has been and will continue to be in soil ecology. I have > 16 years experience in climate and environmental change research, much of it focussed on ecosystem functioning both in the field and in the laboratory. I have published extensively in ecology (Science; Ecol Letters; TREE; Glob Change Biol; Funct Ecol), have been cited >2000 times; H-index 22. ( I have 28 peer-reviewed articles published in the leading international journals (see attached list). I completed my PhD on the impact of elevated atmospheric CO2 on mycorrhizal fungi in 1998, supervised by Prof Alastair Fitter. I was then part of the NERC Soil Biodiversity Programme looking at carbon cycling with Profs A Fitter and Phil Ineson; this work led to 2 highly cited Science papers. I then secured an Individual Marie Curie Fellowship with Prof Iver Jakobsen at the then Risø National Laboratory in Denmark. During this time I worked on the impacts of environmental change on mycorrhizal fungi at the ETH Swiss Free Air CO2 Enrichment experiment with Prof Andreas Lüscher and the Buxton Climate Change Impacts Laboratory with Prof Phil Grime. I then worked on a NERC project with Drs Francis Gilbert and Peter Crittenden investigating ecosystem functioning in moss arthropod communities. My research at ECEHH integrated ecology into health policy aimed at adapting to climate change. My current research focus at XJTLU has two strands: global change ecology as described above and climate change and human health, specifically focussed on impacts of on the elderly in Eastern China. I have 2 ongoing projects whcih began whilst whilst i was at XJTLU, these are: (1) XJTLU Research Development Fund for a PhD student to work on “Climate Change Adaptation and Human Health: Reducing Climate Change Health Risks in the Ageing Chinese Population”, the team includes Susie Qin & Elmer Villanueva at XJTLU and Prof Andy Morse at Liverpool; (2) XJTLU Research Development Fund for a PhD student to work on “Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and soil carbon fluxes in Citrus groves under different land management regimes”, the team includes Yi Zou & Zheng Chen at XJTLU, Prof Rob Marrs at Liverpool & Prof YongHong Wu at the Soil Science Institute of the Chinese Academy of Science (Nanjing).

I have business experience of risk assessment, policy analysis and strategic planning gained over four years as a risk manager at E.ON Energy Trading. I sat on the Cornwall Health and Environment Committee, and advised Cornwall Council on their State of the Environment Report and Joint Strategic Needs Assessment.

Teaching interests

Teaching experience:

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PR108906, 12/07/2016)

  • PhD student primary supervisor (RDF funded)

  • UG module lead and sole delivery for ‘Ecology in a Changing World’ ENV306 (2014-present)

  • UG module lead and principal delivery for ‘Research Design’ ENV201 (2015-present)

  • UG module lead and coordinator for UG final year projects ENV301 (2014-2016)

  • UG module lead and sole delivery for ‘Introduction to Planet Earth’ ENV104 (2016-present)

  • UG lecturing for ‘Ecology and Conservation’ ENV102 (2016)

  • UG lecturing for ‘Environmental Issues’ ENV002 (2015-2016)

  • UG final year project supervision (2015-present)

  • Delivering lectures on climate change to masters students

  • Year Leader for year 4 UG (2014-2016)

  • Year Leader for year 1 UG (2016-present)

  • Past lecture delivery for various UG modules in ecology (e.g. field skills, statistics, ecology)

  • Preparing, organising and giving series of tutorials to undergraduates (ecology, climate change)

  • Leading undergraduate biology/ecology practical sessions (laboratory and field)

  • Leading practical statistics classes for biology undergraduates

  • Supervisor for successful Nuffield Research Placement summer student


Impact and engagement

Recent items picked up by the wider media:

Staddon PL, Depledge MH (2015) Fracking cannot be reconciled with climate change mitigation policies. Environmental Science & Technology 49: 8269-8270 ( Led to invitation to write an opinion piece for EnergyVoice.

Staddon PL, Montgomery HE, Depledge MH (2014) Climate warming will not decrease winter mortality. Nature Climate Change 4: 190-194 (online 23/02/14, doi:10.1038/nclimate2121). Picked up by various media outlets.


Referee for the following international journals and grant awarding bodies:

Science, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, Nature Climate Change, Ecology, Functional Ecology, Global Change Biology, Journal of Ecology, Mycorrhiza, New Phytologist, Oecologia, Plant and Soil, Scientific Reports, Soil Biology and Biochemistry, Basic and Applied Ecology, Climate Policy, Environmental Health, Geochemical Journal, International Journal of Biometeorology, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Regional Environmental Change, Natural Environment Research Council (UK), Medical Research Council (UK), Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (Portugal).

External collaborations

Past and present collaborators:

H. Blum (ETH Zürich, Switzerland), M. Bradford (Imperial College), C. Bronk Ramsey (Oxford), B. Chen (RCEES-Chinese Academy of Sciences), L. Cole (Lancaster), P.D. Crittenden (Nottingham), L.A. Dawson (Macaulay Institute), M.H. Depledge (Exeter), M. Everard (UWE), A.H. Fitter (York), F. Gilbert (Nottingham), A. Gonzalez (McGill, Canada), J.P. Grime (Sheffield), Z. Hao (RCEES-CAS), P. Ineson (York), I. Jakobsen (Risoe National Laboratory, Denmark), F. Laggoun-Défarge (ISTO, CNRS), L. McEwen (UWE), H.E. Montgomery (UCL), K. Morrissey (Exeter), A.P. Morse (Liverpool), P.-A. Olsson (Lund, Sweden), N. Ostle (CEH Merlewood), K. Thompson (Sheffield), S. Townley (Exeter), E.V. Villanueva (XJTLU), Y. Wu (ISS-CAS), Y. Zou (XJTLU).

- Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, Departments of Environmental Science & of Public Health, Suzhou, PRC

- Insitute of Soil Science, Chinese Academy of Science, Nanjing, PRC

- Research Centre for Environment and Ecological Sciences, CAS, Beijing, PRC

- University of Lund, Department of Biology, Sweden

- Institut des Sciences de la Terre d'Orléans, Université d'Orléans & CNRS, France


Direct and indirect health impacts of climate change on the vulnerable elderly population in East China (2019-09-01)
Kinay, Pelin; Morse, Andrew P.; Villanueva, Elmer V.; Morrissey, Karyn and Staddon, Philip L.
Environmental Reviews, 27(3) (pp. 295-303)

Functional sustainability of nutrient accumulation by periphytic biofilm under temperature fluctuations (2019)
Sun, Rui; Xu, Ying; Wu, Yonghong; Tang, Jun; Esquivel-Elizondo, Sofia; Kerr, Philip G.; Staddon, Philip L. and Liu, Junzhuo
Environmental Technology ((Early Access))

Fracking Cannot Be Reconciled with Climate Change Mitigation Policies (2015)
Staddon, Philip L. and Depledge, Michael H.
Environmental Science & Technology, 49(14) (pp. 8269-8270)

A decade of free-air CO2 enrichment increased the carbon throughput in a grass-clover ecosystem but did not drastically change carbon allocation patterns (2014-04)
Staddon, Philip L.; Reinsch, Sabine; Olsson, Pål A.; Ambus, Per; Lüscher, Andreas and Jakobsen, Iver
Functional Ecology, 28(2) (pp. 538-545)

Climate warming will not decrease winter mortality (2014-02-23)
Staddon, Philip L.; Montgomery, Hugh E. and Depledge, Michael H.
Nature Climate Change, 4(3) (pp. 190-194)

Reply to 'A note of caution about the excess winter deaths measure' (2014)
Staddon, Philip; Montgomery, Hugh and Depledge, Michael
Nature Climate Change, 4(8) (pp. 648-648)