A/PROF Ben Phillips

A/PROF Ben Phillips


  • Dispersal Evolution
  • Ecological Modelling
  • Evolution in response to environmental change
  • Population dynamics
  • Reptiles and amphibians



  • I am deeply interested in evolution, and I am deeply interested in how spatial processes influence evolution. These interests explain my involvement in various projects including hybrid zones, invasive species (cane toads), rapid evolution (snakes, chytrid fungus), and community dynamics (spinifex and fire). I also enjoy the art of confronting models with data, so am involved here and there with ecological modeling work to which I've taken an interest. My current work (involving many collaborators and students) is roughly organized as such: 1. Evolution on range edges. Using theoretical and empirical approaches to understanding how dispersal and life-history evolve on species' range edges. 2. Adaptation to climate in isolated populations. The idea here is to understand the role of isolation in generating adaptive diversity in the traits that mediate the impact of climate change. 3. Evolution in response to invaders. Most of this work is around evolution of Australian predators to the arrival of toxic cane toads. 4. Eco-evolutionary miscellania. The grab-bag that holds many other projects including work on invasive geckos and their parasites; the host-parasite dynamics of chytrid fungus and frogs; halting the spread of toads across northern Australia, to name a few. I'm always interested in making inference from ecological data.   


Selected publications


Investigator on


Education and training

  • PhD, University of Sydney 2005
  • BSc (Hons), The University of Queensland 1999



Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • I'm interested in working with students on projects mentioned in the numbered points of the biography section.  I am, however, broadly interested in ecology, evolution, and ecological modelling so am happy to entertain other ideas!