Robert Fowler

Robert Fowler

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Doctoral Researcher

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Title of PhD: Building for Biodiversity; Ecosystem services within our cities – Pollination Service and Bees

Supervisors: Dr Jon Sadler, Dr Mark Ledger, Dr Adam Bates

Robert Fowler plans to investigate the impact varying levels of urbanisation have on the wild bee fauna of the UK and the effect this has on the pollination service they provide. Through integrating a species and functional diversity perspective with cost/reward foraging ratios and seed set analysis at a landscape scale, he plans to shed light on the potential variation in species diversity and pollination service over a gradient of anthropogenic disturbance.


PhD in Pollination Ecology (2010-present)

MRes Bioscience (2009-2010)

BSc (Hons) Ecology and Biogeography (2008-2009)

FdSc Arboriculture/Forestry and Woodland Management (2006-2008)


Robert Fowler’s undergraduate study consisted of two halves, two years completing an FdSc in Arboriculture/Forestry and Woodland Management and a one year top up in BSc (Hons) Ecology and Biogeography, both at the University of Brighton, Sussex. Upon passing with a first, Robert gained a position on the MRes Bioscience course at the same institution, investigating the effects of protein content on the pollen foraging choice of Bumblebees in Agri-environmental schemes. Where upon he was accepted onto a PhD at the University of Birmingham funded by EPSRC through the Urban Futures project.


Research interests

  • Pollination Ecology
  • Hymenoptera
  • Urban Ecology
  • Chemical Ecology
  • Ecology and Biogeography

Other activities

Robert Fowler has taken in part in a number of ecological and conservation activities including;

  • Sound and visual surveying of Cetacean’s with DELPHIS off the coast of Ischia, Italy
  • Water Vole, Water Shrew and Otter Surveys with Mammal Society and University of Brighton
  • Helping to survey potential habitat and raise public awareness of wild pollinators (mainly bumblebees) in Kent, associated with the Short-haired bumblebee (Bombus subterraneus) reintroduction


Presentation of Master’s research at the Royal Entomological Society Conference (2010) – Does pollen quality influence the floral acceptance and foraging effectiveness of bumblebees?