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Educational Background

  • 2010 – 2014 PhD, University of Amsterdam, Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (Netherlands).
  • 2007 – 2010 Master Biological Sciences, University of Amsterdam. Track ‘Ecology and Evolution’ (Netherlands).
  • 2004 – 2007 Bachelor Biology, University of Amsterdam (Netherlands).
  • 2017 – 2019 Juan de la Cierva-formación research fellow, Instituto de Ciencias de la Tierra Jaume Almera (Barcelona, Spain).
  • 2016 – 2016 Postdoctoral Researcher, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany).
  • 2015 – 2015 Post-excavation analyst, EARTH Integrated Archaeology (Amersfoort,Netherlands)
  • 2014 – 2016 Guest researcher, University of Amsterdam, Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (Netherlands).


Research Interests

  • (Tropical) paleoecology
  • Biotic responses to climate change
  • Spatial and temporal patterns in island biodiversity following (first) human impact
  • Island ecology and biogeography
  • Conservation ecology applications of palynology


Active Projects




Previous selected publications


Gosling, W.D., De Kruif, J., Norder, S.J., De Boer, E.J., Hooghiemstra, H., Rijsdijk, K.F., McMichael, C.N.H., 2017. Mauritius on fire: Tracking historical human impacts on biodiversity loss. Biotropica, DOI: 10.1111/btp.12490.

Hansen, D.M., Austin, J.J. Baxter, R.H., De Boer, E.J., Falcón W., Norder S.J., Rijsdijk, K.F., Thébaud, C., Bunbury, N.J., Warren, B.H., 2017. Origins of endemic island tortoises in the western Indian Ocean: A critique of the human-translocation hypothesis. Journal of Biogeography 44 (6), 1430-1435, DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12893.

Nogue, Sandra, de Nascimento, Lea, Froyd, Cynthia A., Wilmshurst, Janet M., de Boer, Erik J., Coffey, Emily E.D., Whittaker, Robert J., Fernández-Palacios, José María and Willis, Kathy J., 2017. Island biodiversity conservation needs palaeoecology. Nature Ecology & Evolution, DOI: 10.1038/s41559-017-0181.

Patiño, J., Whittaker, Robert J., Borges, Paolo A.V., De Boer, Erik J., + 25 authors. A roadmap for island biology: 50 fundamental questions after 50 years of The Theory of Island Biogeography, 2017. Journal of Biogeography 44, 963-983, DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12986.


Power, M.J., Whitney, B.S., Mayle, F.E., De Boer. E.J., MacLean, K., 2016. Fire, climate and vegetation linkages in the Bolivian Chiquitano seasonally dry forest. Proceedings of the Royal Society-B 371: 20150165.


Rijsdijk, K.F., Hume, J.P., De Boer. E.J., + 35 authors, 2015. A Review of the Dodo and its Ecosystem: Interdisciplinary Research of a Vertebrate Concentration-Lagerstätte in Mauritius. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, DOI: 10.1080/02724634.2015.1113803.

De Boer, E.J., Vélez, M.I., Rijsdijk, K.F., et al., 2015. A deadly cocktail: how a prolonged drought around 4200 cal. yr BP caused mass mortality events at the infamous ‘dodo swamp’ in Mauritius. The Holocene 25, 758-771, https://doi.org/10.1177/0959683614567886.


De Boer, E.J., Tjallingii, R., Vélez, M.I., et al., 2014. Climate variability in the SW Indian Ocean from an 8000-yr long multi-proxy record in the Mauritian lowlands shows a middle to late Holocene shift from negative IOD-state to ENSO-state. Quaternary Science Reviews 86, 175-189, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2013.12.026.


Jansen, B., De Boer, E.J., Cleef, A.M., et al., 2013. Reconstruction of late Holocene forest dynamics in northern Ecuador from biomarkers and pollen in soil cores. Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology 386, 607-619, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2013.06.027.

Hooghiemstra, H., Rijsdijk, K.F., De Boer, E.J., et al., 2013. Insular environmental change; climate-forced and system-driven. In J.M. Fernandez-Palacios, L. de Nascimento, J.C. Hernandez, S. Clemente, J.P. Diaz & A. Gonzalez (Eds.), Climate change perspectives from the Atlantic: past, present and future (pp. 51-74). Tenerife: Servicio de Publicaciones, Universidad de La Laguna.

De Boer, E.J., Slaikovska, M., Hooghiemstra, H., et al., 2013b. Multi-proxy reconstruction of environmental dynamics and colonization impacts in the Mauritian uplands. Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology 383-384, 42-51, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2013.04.025.

De Boer, E.J., Hooghiemstra, H., Florens, et al., 2013a. Rapid succession of plant associations on the small ocean island of Mauritius at the onset of the Holocene. Quaternary Science Reviews 68, 114-125, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2013.02.005.


Van der Plas, G.W., De Boer, E.J., Hooghiemstra, H., et al., 2012. Mauritius since the last glacial: environmental and climatic reconstruction of the last 38,000 years from Kanaka Crater. Journal of Quaternary Science 7, 159–168, DOI: 10.1002/jqs.1526.