Born in London in 1951 and a student at the University of Leeds, Mike Begon has spent his whole scientific career at the University of Liverpool, where he is now Professor of Ecology, specializing in the population and community ecology of infectious diseases in wildlife.Colin Townsend obtained his DPhil at the University of Sussex before taking up teaching positions at Oxford University and the University of East Anglia. In 1989 he moved from the UK to New Zealand to the University of Otago where he was chair of the Zoology Department, and is now Director of the Ecology, Conservation and Biodiversity Research Group. He was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society of New Zealand in 1997.John Harper is an award-winning biologist and a leading figure in plant population biology. He has served as a council member of the fellowship of the Royal Society and received the Darwin Award in 1990. He is also the author of Population Biology of Plants and co-author of Essentials of Ecology.