Dr Ben Courtney Stevenson

PhD, University of St Andrews

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I originally completed BSc (Hons; in statistics and psychology) and MSc (in statistics) degrees here at the University of Auckland. I then moved to the University of St Andrews, United Kingdom, graduating with a PhD in statistics in 2016. I remained there for twelve months as a research fellow, before joining this department as a lecturer in January 2017.

Please see my personal webpage for further information.


Research | Current

I develop statistical methods and the associated software to estimate ecological parameters of interest, usually animal abundance or density. I am currently working on new spatial capture-recapture methods, and modelling uncertain animal identification on capture-recapture surveys.

Teaching | Current

Semester 1, 2018: STATS 330
Semester 2, 2018: STATS 201/8

Postgraduate supervision

To see a list of available available projects, click here. Some of these may not yet appear on the department's list.

Current students:

Callum Young, MSc (research)
Project title: Spatial capture-recapture models for detection counts and clustered activity centres

Janice Seo, BSc (Hons)
Project title: Robustness of spatial capture-recapture models

Rishika Chopara, Summer research student
Project title: Species distribution maps from spatial capture-recapture models

Areas of expertise

Ecological statistics, capture-recapture methods, statistical computing.

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Measey, G. J., Stevenson, B. C., Scott, T., Altwegg, R., & Borchers, D. L. (2016). Counting chirps: acoustic monitoring of cryptic frogs. Journal of Applied Ecology10.1111/1365-2664.12810
  • Kidney, D., Rawson, B. M., Borchers, D. L., Stevenson, B. C., Marques, T. A., & Thomas, L. (2016). An Efficient Acoustic Density Estimation Method with Human Detectors Applied to Gibbons in Cambodia. PLOS ONE, 11 (5), e0155066-e0155066. 10.1371/journal.pone.0155066
  • Fewster, R. M., Stevenson, B. C., & Borchers, D. L. (2016). Trace-Contrast Models for Capture–Recapture Without Capture Histories. Statistical Science, 31 (2), 245-258. 10.1214/16-STS551
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Rachel Fewster
  • Borchers, D. L., Stevenson, B. C., Kidney, D., Thomas, L., & Marques, T. A. (2015). A Unifying Model for Capture–Recapture and Distance Sampling Surveys of Wildlife Populations. Journal of the American Statistical Association, 110 (509), 195-204. 10.1080/01621459.2014.893884
  • Stevenson, B. C., Borchers, D. L., Altwegg, R., Swift, R. J., Gillespie, D. M., & Measey, G. J. (2015). A general framework for animal density estimation from acoustic detections across a fixed microphone array. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 6 (1), 38-48. 10.1111/2041-210X.12291
  • Stevenson, B. C., & Millar, R. B. (2013). Promising the moon? Evaluation of indigenous and lunar fishing calendars using semiparametric generalized mixed models of recreational catch data. Environmental and Ecological Statistics, 20 (4), 591-608. 10.1007/s10651-013-0236-5
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/33590
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Russell Millar

Contact details

Primary location

Level 3, Room 326
New Zealand

Web links