Dr Ming-Mei Liang PhD

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Research Fellow

Contact details

+ 44(0)121 41 44523
+ 44 (0)121 41 44942
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Liang is a Tertiary palynologist with interests in Cenozoic and Quaternary terrestrial ecosystems, reconstructing past ecosystems using multi-proxy approaches, quantitative and qualitative assessments of climate and environmental change, and Cenozoic Palynology. Her research utilises high resolution sampling of pollen and spores to qualitatively and quantitatively reconstruct palaeoenvironmental and palaeoclimatic trends over time. Previous research has focused extensively on the Middle Miocene Climatic Optimum and on the Miocene Shanwang lagerstatte from Shangdong Provice in north China. On a broader scale Ming-Mei also works on quantitative evaluation of the Neogene palaeoclimates of continental China, and is interested in the identification of monsoonal conditions and timing of monsoon initiation.


BSc (Inner Mongolia Teaching University)

PhD (Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences and University of Tubingen)


Dr Liang completed her PhD in 2001 jointly between the Institute of Botany of the Chinese Academy of Science in Beijing (China) and from the University of Tuebingen (Germany), and her career history includes a Research Associate at the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh and a Visiting Research Fellow at the Smithsonian Institute.


  • Statistical analysis of palaeoenvironmental and palaeoclimatic trends during the Middle Miocene Climatic Optimum
  • Refining methods of climatic reconstruction from palaynological data based on nearest living relative approaches especially the Coexistence Approach (CoA)
  • Assessing climatic signals from different proxy methods to enable integrated palaeoclimatic analysis
  • Palaeoclimate assessments of the Neogene of China and the identification of monsoonal conditions
  • The Shanwang Miocene lagerstatte


Seyfullah, L. J., Hilton, J., Liang M. M. and Wang S. J. 2010. Resolving the systematic and phylogenetic position of isolated ovules: a case study from a new genus from the Upper Permian of China. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 164: 84-108.

Wang, S. J. Hilton, J., Liang, M. M. and Stevens, L. 2006. Permineralized seed plants from the Upper Permian of southern China: a new species of Cardiocarpus. International Journal of Plant Sciences 167: 1247-1257. 

Liang, M. 2004. Palynology, palaeoecology and palaeoclimate of the Miocene Shangwang Basin, Shanwang Province, Eastern China. Acta Palaeobotanica (Supplement No. 5). 1-70 & 12 plates.  

Liang, M. M., Bruch, A.A., Collinson, M., Mosbrugger, V., Li, C.S., Sun, Q.G., and Hilton, J. 2003. Testing the climatic estimates from different palaeobotanical methods: an example from the Middle Miocene Shanwang flora of China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 198: 279-301.