Professor Firn is a theoretical and applied ecologist who specialises in linking ecological theory to the sustainable management of degraded grasslands and forests. The driving motivation throughout Professor Firn’s career has been to find smarter, cheaper and more sustainable ways of restoring degraded plant communities. Many of the ecosystem functions that humans need to survive are provided by richly diverse ecosystems, such as oxygen production, water filtration, nutrient cycling, pollination and carbon sequestration. Globally, unsustainable land use has led to the degradation of many valuable ecosystems and the loss of irreplaceable biodiversity.
Professor Firn is committed to developing a better understanding of how the loss of native biodiversity impacts on ecosystems and subsequently finding better ways to restore it.