Biography & Abstract



Prof. William J. Bond

University of Cape Town

South Africa


William Bond is Chief Scientist of the South African Environmental Observation Network and Emeritus Professor in Biological Sciences at the University of Cape Town. He is an ecologist with broad interests in the processes most strongly influencing vegetation change in the past and present, including fire, vertebrate herbivory, atmospheric CO2 and climate change. He has also worked on plant-animal mutualisms and on plant form and function. He has particular interests in grasslands and savanna ecosystems and in winter rainfall shrublands. He has served on the Boards of the South African National Botanical Institute and of Cape Nature and on the Editorial Boards of several journals. He has published over 200 papers and has co-authored three books (realising an h-factor of 79, Google Scholar). He was elected a Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, in 2013.


Title: Ecology on the light side: explorations of non-forested ecosystems.

Abstract: It will be a talk on those ecosystems that occur in climates and on soils that can support forests but instead support grasslands, savannas, shrublands or open woodlands. I consider them to be a major anomaly to much classic ecological theory and, partly as a result, greatly misunderstood in international policy arenas.