Robin Freeman

Head of Indicators and Assessments, ZSL

I'm currently a 2020 research fellow in CoMPLEX (the Centre for Mathematics and Physics in the Life Sciences and Experimental Biology) at UCL and Head of the Indicators and Assessments Unit at the Zoological Society of London. I also work closely with the Computational Ecology group at Microsoft Research Cambridge and am a research associate with the Animal Behaviour group at Oxford University.


My research spans many disciplines from the creation of new kinds of technology for monitoring and tracking animals in the wild, to remote fieldwork utilising those technologies, to new methods for analysing and interpreting the data we are now able to collect.

In collaboration with Microsoft Research, I have recently launched Mataki, an open, programmable, tracking technology to enables the collection of new kinds of movement data. With the Zoological Society of London, we have recently run a call for collaborations to get these devices into some exciting conservation projects.

One of the main strands of my research to date has been the spatial and movement ecology of seabirds, from identifying and predicting behaviours that occur during foraging, to the analysis of multiple years of global migration data and how migratory behaviour varies with environmental drivers. This has involved both complex fieldwork, but also the creation of new analytical tools to identify and predict behaviour from biologging data. 

I'm also very interested in the decisions and dynamics of groups, and how decision making and information transfer can be identified within movement data. 



Research Interests: 
  • Spatial ecology, foraging and migration.
  • Analysis and modelling of animal movements
  • Computational and technological systems for ecological data collection
  • Collective Behaviour
  • Spatial analysis and visualisation
  • Animal behaviour and conservation
Contact Email: 
robin [dot] freeman [at] ucl [dot] ac [dot] uk