Welcome to the Pearse Lab

We use species evolutionary history to better understand and predict their present-day ecology. Our lab develops new statistical and computational tools to answer fundamental questions about the origins and future of biodiversity.

Our fieldsites employ a novel fractal sampling design to leverage species’ responses to existing environmental gradients to predict future responses to change. We work with a number of conservation programs, such as the EDGE of Existence Program, to help safeguard natural ecosystems and the valuable services they provide for humanity.

We are always looking for new undergraduates, MSc, and PhD students looking to join the lab, or potential post-docs interested in applying for funding. Have a look around this website and, if you’re interested, please send Will an email

We are grateful for funding from UK Research and Innovation and the Natural Environment Research Council (UKRI/NERC, and in particular the COVID-19 fund), the National Science Foundation, the USDA Forest Service (and in particular the PIBO program), iDIV/sDIV, and others. Our lab was previously at Utah State University in the Ecology Center and Department of Biology.


September 2020

Tom's manuscript on the role of environment and non-pharmaceutical interventions in COVID-19 transmission is submitted - read the pre-print here

August 2020

Michael's first chapter on bee phenological responses to climate change is published in Ecology Letters!

June 2020

We've received funding from UKRI/NERC to help improve forecasting of COVID-19 and SARS-CoV-2 in the coming winter. Excited to welcome Tom Smith to the lab to work on the project!

February 2020

Excited to say the lab is moving to the Department of Life Sciences at Imperial College London!

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