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Modelling

Current modelling work encompasses epidemiological theory, population genetics, landscape ecology and economic modelling. The principal challenge is to capture the essential feature of a complicated biological system, such as an epidemic, in a sufficiently rigorous mathematical formulation that allows us to analyse the spatial and temporal dynamics of the system in order to understand:

  • why do epidemics occur?
  • how do they spread?
  • why are they so variable?
  • why does disease occur in some regions and not in others?
  • how can we move from understanding small-scale phenomena at the level of the plant or patch to the larger-scale of epidemic at the field or region?
  • and how can we improve the efficiency of control?

This involves a range of modelling approaches, mathematical techniques and statistical techniques.