James Cook Distinguished Research Professor at James Cook University in Cairns, northern Queensland, Australia. William F. Laurance´s research focuses on the impact of intensive landuses, such as habitat fragmentation, logging, and wildfires, on tropical ecosystems, and on global-change phenomena and conservation policy. He works extensively in Amazonia, Australasia, and Central Africa. Dr. Laurance received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1989 and subsequently held research and science-leadership positions in tropical Australia. From 1996–2009 he spent 14 years as a Senior Scientist with the Smithsonian Institution, where he was based in Brazil and Panama. Dr. Laurance has published five books and over 300 scientific and popular articles. A leading voice for conservation, he firmly believes that scientists must engage policy makers and the general public, as well as other scientists. He has received numerous professional awards and is a fellow of the American Association of the Advancement of Science and former president of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation, the world’s largest scientific organization devoted to the study and preservation of tropical ecosystems.
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