Dr Phoebe Barnard

Honorary Research Associate
Species response to environmental and climate change


Phoebe is executive director of the Pacific Biodiversity Institute, affiliate full professor of the University of Washington, and honorary research associate of the ACDI and FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology.  She has worked on diverse sustainability and biodiversity issues, large and small -- from ecoregional and national biodiversity and climate change strategic planning, policy and implementation, and the global status and trends of ecosystems and their ability to support human health, livelihoods and wellbeing, to ecological vulnerability and adaptation studies on endemic species of the fynbos biome. Phoebe was previously lead scientist of the South African National Biodiversity Institute’s Climate Change Bioadaptation Division and founding head of its Biodiversity Futures Program, leading an international and interdisciplinary global change ecology team of postdocs, PhD and MSc students as well as coworkers from the universities of Durham, Cambridge University/ RSPB, Cape Town, Stellenbosch, KwaZulu-Natal, Cape Peninsula Technology, and Queensland. Their work shed light on patterns of biodiversity and endemism, past, present and future in southern Africa, and on endemic bird vulnerability and adaptation to climate change in fragmented, fire-prone landscapes.

Link to climate change & development:

Phoebe works at multiple levels - planetary, continental, national, ecoregional, population, and ecological community and population levels. She increasingly works on environmental futures and sustainability tipping points, including transformation of the economy and impacts on biodiversity and ecosystems, including species not of economic importance but significant in ecological function and ecosystem services to humanity.

Link to ACDI:

Phoebe co-supervises PhD student Lavinia Perumal (2016-18) with Mark New and IIASA collaborators Matthias Jonas and Wei Liu. Through 2016, she led the ACDI-affiliated project on fynbos endemic birds under climate and land use change, and co-supervised ACDI MSc student Beth Mackay (2011-12).

Tel:  +1 360 914 2307

Research Project:

Climate impacts on Fynbos endemic birds

There are few greater challenges facing biodiversity today than that posed by climate change.

Associated Centre: 

The Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology

 The mobility of birds makes them potentially excellent biotic indicators of climate change.

Research Project: 
Associated Centre: