Dr Claire Risley


Dr Claire Risley

Lecturer in Animal Disease Epidemiology

Department of Life Sciences

Contact Details


  • 2013-Present: Lecturer in Animal Disease Epidemiology, IBERS, Aberystwyth University, UK.
    • 2010-2013: Prof Matthew Baylis' PDRA, Liverpool University Climate and Infectious Diseases of Animals group, Institute of Infection and Global Health, Liverpool, UK.
    • 2005-2010: PDRA, Partnership for Chid Development, Imperial College London, UK.
    • 2003-2005: Prof Azra Ghani's PDRA, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Imperial College London, UK.
    • 1998-2002: D. Phil at University of Oxford's Wellcome Trust Centre for the Epidemiology of Infectious Disease and the Institute for Animal Health Compton.
    • 1995-1995: Degree in Biological Sciences (Botany) from the University of Oxford, UK.

Additional Information

D.Phil Thesis:

Risley C.L. (2002) Population dynamics of plasmid-mediated antibiotic resistance in Salmonella typhimurium in chickens. DPhil thesis, Oxford University.


I am an infectious disease epidemiologist with interests in biodiversity and conservation modelling. My research focuses on the large-scale predictors of disease, for example the relationship between disease, biodiversity and climate.

Past research:
I have developed models to investigate several phenomena including conditions minimising antibiotic resistance transfer to Salmonella in chickens and the spatial localisation of Gonorrhoea strains, published in the Lancet. Later I modelled the impact that HIV has on African education systems in collaboration with governments and UN agencies. I was lucky enough to work both in the field and at ministry level in low-income countries, gathering data and training Education and Health specialists in impact projection. Concurrently to these projects, my passion for biodiversity and conservation led to a collaboration with the Institute of Zoology at London Zoo, modelling the extinction of Steller's Sea Cow (published in Biology Letters and recognised for the "Faculty of 1000" award for scientific merit), and declines in currently endangered animals including the recently extinct Baiji. I have investigated the impact of climate and diseases of threatened wildlife populations, both undertaking large-scale analyses and specialising in diseases in threatened animals of Madagascar, and worked to improve the ENHanCED Infectious Disease database (EID2), a useful resource detailing pathogens, their hosts and locations using information directly sourced from the literature. It outputs lists of hosts by pathogen and pathogens by host, and distribution maps both by country and modelled on climate: http:zoonosis.ac.uk/EID2.

Research Groups

  • Parasitology and Helminth Control


Occhibove, F, Kenobi, K, Swain, M & Risley, C 2022, 'An eco‐epidemiological modeling approach to investigate dilution effect in two different tick‐borne pathosystems', Ecological Applications, vol. 32, no. 3, e2550. 10.1002/eap.2550
Occhibove, F, McKeown, N, Risley, C & Ironside, J 2022, 'Eco-epidemiological screening of multi-host wild rodent communities in the UK reveals pathogen strains of zoonotic interest', International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife, vol. 17, pp. 278-287. 10.1016/j.ijppaw.2022.02.010
Kock, R, Chardonnet, P & Risley, C 2016, Antelope Diseases: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. in Antelope Conservation: From Diagnosis to Action. Conservation Science and Practice, Wiley, pp. 108-135.
Wardeh, M, Risley, C, McIntyre, MK, Setzkorn, C & Baylis, M 2015, 'Database of host-pathogen and related species interactions, and their global distribution', Scientific Data, vol. 2, no. N/A, 150049. 10.1038/sdata.2015.49
Turvey, ST, Risley, CL, Moore, JE, Barrett, LA, Yujiang, H, Xiujiang, Z, Kaiya, Z & Ding, W 2013, 'Can local ecological knowledge be used to assess status and extinction drivers in a threatened freshwater cetacean?', Biological Conservation, vol. 157, pp. 352-360. 10.1016/j.biocon.2012.07.016
More publications on the Research Portal