About

NERC Independent Research Fellow
Mathematical Sciences & the Milner Centre for Evolution

I am a mathematical biologist interested in the ecology and (co)evolution of hosts and their parasites. I use mathematical models and simulations to study how parasites spread through populations and evolve traits such as infectivity and virulence, and in turn how this affects the evolution of host traits such as resistance or mating strategies. My research covers a broad range of topics in biology, including the evolution and maintenance of diversity across space and time, sexual selection and reproductive strategies, and niche evolution. In my spare time I enjoy running, hiking and nature photography.

Appointments

2016
NERC Independent Research Fellow, Department of Mathematical Sciences & Milner Centre for Evolution, University of Bath

2015-18
Visiting Research Scholar, Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley

2014-16
Research Fellow, Biosciences, University of Exeter

Awards

2014
Thomas Henry Huxley Award and Marsh Prize, presented by the Zoological Society of London for the best doctoral thesis in the UK

2014
Doctoral thesis commendation, University of Oxford

2010
Institute of Mathematics and its Applications Student Prize, University of Warwick

Education

2014
DPhil (PhD), Department of Zoology, University of Oxford

2010
Master of Mathematics (MMath, First Class honours), University of Warwick

Funding

2021-24
NERC-FAPESP Standard Grant (Co-I): “Unravelling the evolutionary processes shaping greenbeard recognition systems and the control of cooperative behaviour” (NE/V012002/1, £650k).

2020-23
NSFDEB-NERC Standard Grant (PI): “The eco-evolutionary dynamics of age-specific resistance to infectious disease” (NE/V003909/1, £299k).

2019-22
NERC Standard Grant (Co-I): “The impact of spatial structure of CRISPR-phage coevolution” (NE/S0001921/1, £559k)

2016-21
NERC Independent Research Fellowship (PI): “Host-parasite coevolution in complex communities” (NE/N014979/1, £558k)

2010-14
BBSRC Doctoral Studentship (4-year stipend)

2008
Undergraduate Research Support Scheme, University of Warwick (£1k)

Invited seminars

2021

  • Research School of Biology, Australian National University & School of Biosciences, University of Melbourne
  • Department of Mathematics, Simon Fraser University
  • Department of Applied Mathematics, University of California, Santa Cruz

2020

  • Department of Evolutionary Biology & Environmental Studies, University of Zurich
  • Department of Engineering Mathematics, University of Bristol

2019

  • Zeeman Institute, University of Warwick
  • Institute of Integrative Biology, ETH Zurich
  • Institute of Evolutionary Biology, University of Edinburgh

2018

  • School of Mathematics, Hefei University of Technology
  • School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Sheffield
  • School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol

2017

Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, University of California, Berkeley

2015

  • Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool
  • Department of Zoology, University of Oxford

Conference activity

Invited talks

2018
Population Ecology and Biological Invasion (Beijing, China)

2016
Plenary: Biology in Lund Annual Meeting (Lund, Sweden)

Contributed talks

2019

  • British Ecological Society Annual Meeting (Belfast, Northern Ireland)
  • European Society for Evolutionary Biology Congress (Turku, Finland)

2018

  • Genetics Society: Genotype to Phenotype to Fitness (Exeter, UK)
  • IGC Symposium: Microbial Eco-Evolutionary Dynamics (Oeiras, Portugal)

2015
European Society for Evolutionary Biology Congress (Lausanne, Switzerland)

2013

  • European Society for Evolutionary Biology Congress (Lisbon, Portugal)
  • European meeting for PhD students in Evolutionary Biology (Penryn, UK)

2010
EPSRC Symposium: Ecology, Epidemiology and Evolution (Warwick, UK)

2009
Congress of the British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics (Cambridge, UK)

Contributed posters

2014

  • Ecology and Behaviour meeting (Montpellier, France)
  • Spatial Evolutionary Epidemiology (Montpellier, France)

2013
Modelling Biological Evolution (Leicester, UK)

Contact me

Email: ben@ecoevotheory.com

Phone: +44 (0) 1225 38 6603

Post:
Dr Ben Ashby
Department of Mathematical Sciences
University of Bath
4 West, Office: 4.14

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