Dr Louise Ross

Dr Louise Ross
Dr Louise Ross

Dr Louise Ross


Lecturer (Scholarship)



2019 - present: Lecturer (Teaching & Scholarship), School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen

2018 - 2019: Teaching Fellow, School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen

2017 - 2018: Researcher, Norwegian Institute of Science and Technology

2013 - 2017: Consultant Ecologist, Ilex Ecological Services

2012 - 2013: Plant Ecologist, The James Hutton Institute

2010 - 2011: Research Assistant, Aberdeen Centre for Environmental Sustainability, University of Aberdeen

2007 - 2011: PhD, School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen

2002 - 2006: Plant Ecologist, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology

2000 - 2001: Field Assistant, New Zealand Department of Conservation

1996 - 2000: BSc (Hons) Ecological Sciences, University of Edinburgh

Memberships and Affiliations

Internal Memberships

SBS Coordinator Students 4 Students mentoring scheme

Johnston Bequest Steering Group

SBS Coordinator Peer-Assisted Learning (PAL) scheme

SBS Decolonising the Curriculum Working Group

Mental Health First Aider

External Memberships

Committee member, Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland Committee for Scotland

British Ecological Society


Prizes and Awards

Nominated for Best Undergraduate Lecturer 2021 (AUSA and the University of Aberdeen Award for Excellence in Teaching)

Nominated for the Conservation Science Award at the Nature of Scotland Awards 2020

Nominated for Best Postgraduate Taught Lecturer 2019 (AUSA and the University of Aberdeen Award for Excellence in Teaching)


Research Overview

My past and present research encompasses plant community ecology, restoration ecology, protected areas, ecosystem services and land management. My particular focus is on characterising, quantifying and interpreting the ways in which plant communities respond to anthropogenic changes in the environment. This includes the impacts of environmental drivers such as nitrogen deposition, grazing, climate change, succession and invasive species. The results have contributed to evidence-based conservation policy and management.


Research Areas

Biological and Environmental Sciences


Research Specialisms

  • Ecology
  • Land Management
  • Biodiversity Conservation
  • Community Ecology

Our research specialisms are based on the Higher Education Classification of Subjects (HECoS) which is HESA open data, published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.

Knowledge Exchange

Fieldwork learning and assessment during the Covid-19 pandemic https://www.abdn.ac.uk/staffnet/teaching/assessment-of-student-learning-in-a-virtual-field-trip--11728.php



My current supervision areas are: Biological and Environmental Sciences.

Current PhD student

Noemi Naszarkowski: Wildfire impacts on biodiversity and natural capital


MSc projects 

Tom Clewer (2021) Can clearfell sites be haven for lichen and fungal communities in Scotland?

Bryony Dowson (2021) Long-term ecological changes in a native pinewood in north-east Scotland, a 50-year resurvey

Samuel Lindsay (2021) The effect of red deer (Cervus elaphus) removal on plant community composition

Clara Guisan (2020) What determines the species richness and composition of lichen and fungal communities on deadwood in clear-felled areas of commercial forestry plantations?

Sophie Linsley-Parrish (2020) Plant community composition changes in a native pinewood forest in Mar Lodge, Scotland, 1971-2019

Savannah Newell (2020) Changes in Upland Moorland Community Composition and Diversity in Protected Areas Versus the Wider Landscape

Stanley Whittaker (2020) An investigation into the success of upland heath restoration in the eastern Cairngorms using pioneering techniques

Cameron Woodall (2020) Assessing long-term changes to the forest structure and dynamics of a Scottish semi-natural pinewood

Daniel Bean (2019) Evaluating the impacts of deer culling on the regeneration zone, Mar Lodge estate, Eastern Cairngorms

Annabel Everard (2019) Native woodland regeneration in the Cairngorms: a comparison of habitat suitability for Scots pine and birch establishment.

Jack Houston (2019) Long-term changes in the vegtetation composition of a native pinewood

Andrew Smith (2019) Evaluating bumblebee visitation preferences in a garden centre to inform bee-friendly planting



Teaching Responsibilities

  • Course Coordinator for EK5510 Ecology, Conservation & Society and BI3806 Conservation in Practice
  • Joint Course Coordinator for BI35F2 Conservation Issues in Scotland Field Trip
  • Contributor to Biological Enhanced Skills Training, Ecology, Conservation Biology, Statistical Analysis of Biological Data, Honours Essay supervisor, Honours project supervisor, Introduction to ecological field research in northern Scotland field trip, Plant Ecology, MSc project supervisor



Page 1 of 3 Results 1 to 10 of 22

  • Disparities between plant community responses to nitrogen deposition and critical loads in UK semi-natural habitats

    Payne, R., Campbell, C., Stevens, C. J., Pakeman, R. J., Ross, L., Britton, A. J., Mitchell, R., Jones, L., Field, C., Caporn, S., Carroll, J., Edmondson, J., Carnell, E. J., Tomlinson, S., Dore, A., Dragotis, U., Dise, N. B.
    Atmospheric Environment, vol. 239, 117478
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Long-term vegetation change in Scotland's native forests

    Hester, A. J., Britton, A. J., Hewison, R. L., Ross, L. C., Potts, J. M.
    Biological Conservation, vol. 235, pp. 136-146
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • The potential for modelling peatland habitat condition in Scotland using long-term MODIS data

    Artz, R., Johnson, S., Bruneau, P., Britton, A. J., Mitchell, R. J., Ross, L., Donaldson-Selby, G., Donnelly, D., Aitkenhead, M. J., Gimona, A., Poggio, L.
    Science of the Total Environment, vol. 660, pp. 429-442
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • What is the most ecologically-meaningful metric of nitrogen deposition?

    Payne, R., Campbell, C., Britton, A. J., Mitchell, R., Pakeman, R. J., Jones, L., Ross, L. C., Stevens, C. J., Field, C., Caporn, S., Carroll, J., Edmondson, J., Carnell, E., Tomlinson, S., Dore, A., Dise, N. B., Dragisits, U.
    Environmental Pollution, vol. 247, pp. 319-331
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Can mowing restore boreal rich-fen vegetation in the face of climate change?

    Ross, L. C., Speed, J., Oien, D., Grygoruk, M., Hassell, K., Lyngstad, A., Moen, A.
    PloS ONE, vol. 14, no. 2, e0211272
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Towards the development of a Nitrogen Deposition Decision Framework for vegetation assessment in Scotland

    Britton, A. J., Ross, L. C.
    Edinburgh: Scottish Natural Heritage
    Books and Reports: Commissioned Reports
  • Climate, pollution and grazing drive long-term change in moorland habitats

    Britton, A. J., Hester, A. J., Hewison, R., Potts, J., Ross, L. C.
    Applied Vegetation Science, vol. 20, no. 2, pp. 194-203
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Sheep grazing in the North Atlantic region: A long-term perspective on environmental sustainability

    Ross, L. C., Austrheim, G., Asheim, L., Bjarnason, G., Feilberg, J., Fosaa, A., Hester, A. J., Holand, O., Jonsdottir, I. S., Mortensen, L., Mysterud, A., Olsen, E., Skonhoft, A., Speed, J. D. M., Steinheim, G., Thompson, D. B., Thorhallsdottir, A.
    Ambio, vol. 45, no. 5, pp. 551-566
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Does nature conservation enhance ecosystem services delivery?

    Eastwood, A., Brooker, R., Irvine, R. J., Artz, R., Norton, L., Bullock, J., Ross, L., Fielding, D., Ramsay, S., Roberts, J., Anderson, W., Dugan, D., Cooksley, S., Pakeman, R. J.
    Ecosystem Services, vol. 17, pp. 152-162
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • A resource for the study of Scottish upland vegetation: habitat and species data from “Plant Communities of the Scottish Highlands” and repeat surveys

    Ross, L. C., Flagmeier, M. K.
    Inverness: Scottish Natural Heritage
    Books and Reports: Commissioned Reports
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Books and Reports

Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings

Contributions to Journals