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Conservation Research Institute



I am interested in the effects of habitat change on biodiversity and ecosystem functions, and development of possible strategies for conservation. My previous work has considered the impacts of selective logging and conversion of forest to oil palm plantations in Southeast Asia on terrestrial and freshwater invertebrates. My current research focuses on strategies for striking a balance between production and conservation in oil palm-dominated landscapes. I am involved in ongoing projects based in Sabah, Malaysia and in Sumatra, Indonesia, to test the value of understory vegetation, riparian buffer strips of different widths, and riparian buffer strip restoration for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function as well as potential impacts on yield.


For more information about the projects I work on please visit:


Key publications: 

Luke, S. H., Purnomo, D., Advento, A. D., Aryawan, A. A. K., Naim, M., Pikstein, R. N., Ps, S., Rambe, T. D. S., Soeprapto, Caliman, J-P, Snaddon, J. L., Foster, W. A., Turner, E. C. (2019). Effects of Understory Vegetation Management on Plant Communities in Oil Palm Plantations in Sumatra, Indonesia. Frontiers in Forests and Global Change, 2(July). doi: 10.3389/ffgc.2019.00033

Luke S.H., Slade E.M., Gray C.L., Annammala, K.V., Drewer, J., Williamson, J., Agama, A.L., Ationg, M., Mitchell, S.L., Vairappan, C.S., Struebig, M.J. (2019) Riparian buffers in tropical agriculture: Scientific support, effectiveness and directions for policy. Journal of Applied Ecology 56:85–92. doi: 10.1111/1365-2664.13280

Luke, S.H., Barclay, H., Bidin, K., Chey, V.K., Ewers, R.M., Foster, W.A., Nainar, A., Pfeifer, M., Reynolds, G., Turner, E.C., Walsh, R.P.D., Aldridge, D.C., (2017). The effects of catchment and riparian forest quality on stream environmental conditions across a tropical rainforest and oil palm landscape in Malaysian Borneo. Ecohydrology e1827. doi:10.1002/eco.1827

Luke, S.H., Dow, R.A., Butler, S., Vun Khen, C., Aldridge, D.C., Foster, W.A., Turner, E.C., (2017). The impacts of habitat disturbance on adult and larval dragonflies (Odonata) in rainforest streams in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Freshwater Biology 62, 491–506. doi:10.1111/fwb.12880

Ewers, R.M., Boyle, M.J.W., Gleave, R.A., Plowman, N.S., Benedick, S., Bernard, H., Bishop, T.R., Bakhtiar, E.Y., Chey, V.K., Chung, A.Y.C., Davies, R.G., Edwards, D.P., Eggleton, P., Fayle, T.M., Hardwick, S.R., Homathevi, R., Kitching, R.L., Khoo, M.S., Luke, S.H., March, J.J., Nilus, R., Pfeifer, M., Rao, S.V., Sharp, A.C., Snaddon, J.L., Stork, N.E., Struebig, M.J., Wearn, O.R., Yusah, K.M., Turner, E.C., (2015). Logging cuts the functional importance of invertebrates in tropical rainforest. Nature Communications, 6, 1–7. doi:10.1038/ncomms7836

Luke, S.H., Fayle, T.M., Eggleton, P., Turner, E.C., & Davies, R.G. (2014). Functional structure of ant and termite assemblages in old growth forest, logged forest and oil palm plantation in Malaysian Borneo. Biodiversity and Conservation, 23, 2817–2832. doi:10.1007/s10531-014-0750-2

Other publications: 
Woodham C.R., Aryawan A.A.K., Luke S.H., Manning P., Caliman J-P., Naim M., Turner E.C., & Slade E.M. (2019) Effects of Replanting and Retention of Mature Oil Palm Riparian Buffers on Ecosystem Functioning in Oil Palm Plantations. Frontiers in Forests and Global Change 2:1–11 . doi: 10.3389/ffgc.2019.00029

Padfield R., Hansen S., Bicknell J., Davies Z., Ehrensperger A., Slade E.M., Evers S., Papargyropoulou E., Bessou C., Abdullah N., Aplin P., Ancrenaz M., Balqis S., Barclay H., Chellaiah D., Choudhary S., Conway S., Cook S., Copeland A., Campos-Arceiz A., Deere N., Drew S., Gilvear D., Gray R., Haller T., Hood A.S.C., Huat L.K., Huynh N., Kangayatkarasu N., Koh L.P., Kumaran S., Lim R.A.H., Yeong Y.K.L., Lucey J., Luke S.H., Montefrio M., Mullin K., Nainar A., K.A.I. Nekaris, Nijman V., Nunes M., Nurhidayu S., O'Reilly P., Puan C.L., Ruppert N., Salim H., Schouten G., Tallontire A., Smith T., Tao H., Tham M.H., Varkkey H., Wadey J., Yule C., Sharif B., Sayok A., & Struebig M. (2019) Co-producing knowledge for environmental sustainability: Defining the research agenda for palm oil. Frontiers in Forests and Global Change 2:1-17 doi: 10.3389/ffgc.2019.00013

Jucker T., Wintle B., Shackelford G., Bocquillon P., Geffert J.L., Kasoar T., Kovacs E., Mumby H.S., Orland C., Schleicher J., Tew E.R., Zabala A., Amano T., Bell A., Bongalov B., Chambers J.M., Corrigan C., Durán A.P., Duvic-Paoli L-A., Emilson C., da Silva J.F., Garnett E.E., Green E.J., Guth M.K., Hacket-Pain A., Hinsley A., Igea J., Kunz M., Luke S.H., Lynam W., Martin P.A., Nunes M.H., Ockendon N., Pavitt A., Payne C.L.R., Plutshack V., Rademacher T.T., Robertson R.J., Rose D.C., Serban A., Simmons B.I., Emilson, E.J.S., Tayleur C., Wordley C.F.R., Mukherjee, N. (2018) Ten-year assessment of the 100 priority questions for global biodiversity conservation. Conservation Biology 1–20 . doi: 10.1111/cobi.13159

Spear D.M., Foster W.A., Advento A.D., Naim, M., Caliman, J-P, Luke, S.H., Snaddon, J.L., Ps, S., Turner, E.C. (2018) Simplifying understory complexity in oil palm plantations is associated with a reduction in the density of a cleptoparasitic spider, Argyrodes miniaceus (Araneae: Theridiidae), in host (Araneae: Nephilinae) webs. Ecology and Evolution 1–9 . doi: 10.1002/ece3.3772

Barclay H., Gray C.L., Luke S.H., et al (2017) RSPO Manual on Best Management Practices (BMPs) for the Management and Rehabilitation of Riparian Reserves

Gibb, H., Sanders, N.J., Dunn, R.R., Arnan, X., Vasconcelos, H.L., Donoso, D.A., Andersen, A.N., Silva, R.R., Bishop, T.R., Gomez, C., Grossman, B.F., Yusah, K.M., Luke, S.H., Pacheco, R., Pearce-Duvet, J., Retana, J., Tista, M. and Parr, C.L. (2017). Habitat Disturbance Selects against Both Small and Large Species across Varying Climates. Ecography 40: 1–9. doi:10.1111/ecog.03244.

Gibb, H., Dunn, R.R., Sanders, N.J., Grossman, B.F., Photakis, M., Abril, S., Agosti, D., .... Luke, S.H., .... Parr, C.L. (2017). A Global Database of Ant Species Abundances. Ecology 98 (3): 883–84. doi:10.1002/ecy.1682.

Májeková, M., Paal, T., Plowman, N.S., Bryndová, M., Kasari, L., Norberg, A., Weiss, M., Bishop, T.R., Luke, S.H., Sam, K., Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Y., Lepš, J., Götzenberger, L., de Bello, F. (2016). Evaluating Functional Diversity: Missing Trait Data and the Importance of Species Abundance Structure and Data Transformation. PLoS One 11: e0149270. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0149270

Dow, R.A. and Luke, S.H. (2015). Phaenandrogomphus safei, a new species from Sabah, northern Borneo (Odonata: Anisoptera: Gomphidae). Zootaxa 3905 (1) 145-150.

Peh, K.S.-H., Lin, Y., Luke, S.H., Foster, W.A., & Turner, E.C. (2014). Book chapter: Forest fragmentation and ecosystem function. In book: Global Forest Fragmentation, Chapter: 8, Publisher: CABI, Editors: C Kettle, L P Koh, pp.96-114

Geographical region

South East Asia
Postdoctoral Research Associate

Contact Details

Museum Room G. 21, Museum of Zoology, Pembroke Street
01223 (7)65409


Departments and institutes: 
Research keywords: 
Conservation Biology
Landscape Ecology