Hi, I’m Simon Rolph

I’m a PhD student at the University of Sheffield. I am a plant population biologist interested in how comparative analyses of population models can provide insight into fundamental and applied questions about the nature of life history trade-offs and responses to environmental change. I am always exploring new ways to visualise life history data and I am an advocate of open-access and reproducible research.

I’m a huge fan of botanical gardens and I have a terrible habit of taking lots of pictures of plants and never getting around to identifying them. I also like trains.


What do I study?


Background: we observe an impressive diversity of life history strategies across the tree of life.


Opportunity: decades of population biology has resulted in data on the demography of hundreds of plants and animal species.


Aims: how can we use this demographic data, alongside a plethora of population modelling techniques, to ask fundamental and applied questions about life history strategies?

Read more about my research

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Resources, notes, ramblings…

2018/05/12 Code Note

Simon's Git(Hub) Reference

Git and GitHub Commands that I use repeatedly. Despite this, I fail to remember them, so here they are for when I forget.

Tagged: Console Git Github

2018/05/12 Code Note

Visualising Matrix Population Models as Sankey Diagrams: a First Attempt with R Package riverplot

On a quest to visualise the flow of matrix population models

Tagged: R MPM Datavis

You can find me on Twitter, Youtube and GitHub.