Research interests:

<abridged from institution url>

My dominant scientific interest, throughout my career, has been the understanding of how organisms have responded to major climatic changes, such as those at glacial-interglacial transitions. I have pursued this major interest through several lines of enquiry:

-Development of a theoretical basis for understanding the role of Quaternary climate change in macroevolution and speciation. In particular, I have highlighted the observation that, despite substantial climatic and other environmental changes during the Quaternary, there has been remarkably little evolution (in the form of, for example, lineage splitting <speciation>) as a consequence (Bennett 1990; Bennett 1997; Bennett 2004).

-I am working to draw theoretical understanding of evolution closer to what actually happened by the extraction and analysis of ancient DNA (aDNA) from fossil pollen(the most abundant and accessible fossils of the Quaternary). DNA from living organisms is accessible and can be readily analysed to give hypotheses about the pattern of evolution of current lineages.

-Development of the understanding of ecological aspects of how organisms have responded to climatic changes has been a long-running theme of my research.

-Acquisition of new data, principally from parts of the world that had been under-explored, by means of pollen analytical and related investigations of lake sediments.

-Development of methods for the analysis of palaeoecological data. I wrote, and have maintained for 15 years, psimpoll, a program for the graphical presentation and numerical analysis of palaeoecological data.

</interests><projects>

My current dominant lines of research interest are: (i) evolution during the Quaternary (Bennett 2010; paper in progress); (ii) the refugial behaviour of organisms during periods of less favourable climate (Provan & Bennett 2008; Bennett & Provan 2008; paper in progress); (iii) late-Quaternary of Kamchatka (Ph.D. student, collaboration with colleagues in Sweden); (iv) late-Quaternary of southern South America (PhD student, several lake sediment sequences under investigation, with colleagues in Sweden and Germany, as well as in our laboratory in QUB; paper in press); and (v) further development of numerical methods for use in late Quaternary palaeoecology (jointly with Prof. Kathy Willis <university of oxford>).

</projects><public>
Bennett, K.D. and Buck, C.E., 2016. Interpretation of lake sediment accumulation rates. The Holocene, 1, p.11.

Klimaschewski, A., Barnekow, L., Bennett, K.D., Andreev, A.A., Andrén, E., Bobrov, A.A. and Hammarlund, D., 2015. Holocene environmental changes in southern Kamchatka, Far Eastern Russia, inferred from a pollen and testate amoebae peat succession record. Global and Planetary Change, 134, pp.142-154.

Andrén, E., Klimaschewski, A., Self, A.E., Amour, N.S., Andreev, A.A., Bennett, K.D., Conley, D.J., Edwards, T.W., Solovieva, N. and Hammarlund, D., 2015. Holocene climate and environmental change in north-eastern Kamchatka (Russian Far East), inferred from a multi-proxy study of lake sediments. Global and Planetary Change, 134, pp.41-54.

Smith, O., Momber, G., Bates, R., Garwood, P., Fitch, S., Pallen, M., Gaffney, V. and Allaby, R.G., 2015. Sedimentary DNA from a submerged site reveals wheat in the British Isles 8000 years ago. Science, 347(6225), pp.998-1001.

Battarbee, R.W., Lamb, H., Bennett, K., Edwards, M., Bjune, A.E., Kaland, P.E., Berglund, B.E., Lotter, A.F., Seppä, H., Willis, K.J. and Herzschuh, U., 2015. John Birks: Pioneer in quantitative palaeoecology. The Holocene, 25(1), pp.3-16.

Career history:

Present: Professor of Environmental Change, University of St Andrews

Active research projects:

My current dominant lines of research interest are: (i) evolution during the Quaternary (Bennett 2010; paper in progress); (ii) the refugial behaviour of organisms during periods of less favourable climate (Provan & Bennett 2008; Bennett & Provan 2008; paper in progress); (iii) late-Quaternary of Kamchatka (Ph.D. student, collaboration with colleagues in Sweden); (iv) late-Quaternary of southern South America (PhD student, several lake sediment sequences under investigation, with colleagues in Sweden and Germany, as well as in our laboratory in QUB; paper in press); and (v) further development of numerical methods for use in late Quaternary palaeoecology (jointly with Prof. Kathy Willis <university of oxford>).

Recent publications:

Bennett, K.D. and Buck, C.E., 2016. Interpretation of lake sediment accumulation rates. ‘Holocene, 26(7), pp.1092-1102’

Klimaschewski, A., Barnekow, L., Bennett, K.D., Andreev, A.A., Andrén, E., Bobrov, A.A. and Hammarlund, D., 2015. Holocene environmental changes in southern Kamchatka, Far Eastern Russia, inferred from a pollen and testate amoebae peat succession record. Global and Planetary Change, 134, pp.142-154.

Andrén, E., Klimaschewski, A., Self, A.E., Amour, N.S., Andreev, A.A., Bennett, K.D., Conley, D.J., Edwards, T.W., Solovieva, N. and Hammarlund, D., 2015. Holocene climate and environmental change in north-eastern Kamchatka (Russian Far East), inferred from a multi-proxy study of lake sediments. Global and Planetary Change, 134, pp.41-54.

Smith, O., Momber, G., Bates, R., Garwood, P., Fitch, S., Pallen, M., Gaffney, V. and Allaby, R.G., 2015. Sedimentary DNA from a submerged site reveals wheat in the British Isles 8000 years ago. Science, 347(6225), pp.998-1001.

Battarbee, R.W., Lamb, H., Bennett, K., Edwards, M., Bjune, A.E., Kaland, P.E., Berglund, B.E., Lotter, A.F., Seppä, H., Willis, K.J. and Herzschuh, U., 2015. John Birks: Pioneer in quantitative palaeoecology. The Holocene, 25(1), pp.3-16.