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Home > Introduction of our tenure-track faculties > Iwai Noriko

Introduction of our tenure-track faculties

Iwai Noriko

Affiliation Organization for Promotion of Tenure-track System / Institute of Agriculture
Division Division of Environment Conservation
Research field Conservation biology, Animal ecology
Keyword(S) Amphibian, aquatic ecosystem, Amami-island
Research experience

・Apr. 2009-Mar. 2010: Post Doctoral Fellow at Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute
・Apr. 2010-Jul. 2011: JSPS research fellow
・Aug. 2011-Nov. 2011: Post doctoral fellow at National Institute for Environmental Studies
・Dec. 2011-Dec.2013: Assistant professor at the University of Tokyo
・Jan. 2014-: Associate professor at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology

Educational background

・2004. B.C. at the University of Tokyo
・2006. M.S. at the University of Tokyo
・2009. Ph.D. At the University of Tokyo


・2009. Award for the best thesis in the graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the University of Tokyo

Selected papers and publications

・Iwai N (2013) Morphology, function, and evolution of the pseudothumb in the Otton frog. Journal of Zoology 289:127-133.
・Iwai N, Shoda-Kagaya E (2012) Population structure of an endangered frog (Babina subaspera) endemic to the Amami Islands: possible impacts of invasive predators on gene flow. Conservation Genetics 13: 717-725.
・Iwai N, Kagaya T, Alford RA (2012) Feeding by omnivores increases food available to consumers. Oikos 121: 313-320.
・Iwai N, Pearson RG, Alford RA (2009) Shredder-tadpole facilitation of leaf litter decomposition in a tropical stream. Freshwater Biology 54: 2573-2580.
・Iwai N, Kagaya T (2007) Positive indirect effect of tadpoles on a detritivore through nutrient regeneration. Oecologia 152:685-694.

Research Description

High distinct rate of wildlife caused by human impacts on ecosystems is one of the most serious problems on earth. Human impacts cannot be zero, thus we need to balance human impacts and animal conservation in order to achieve sustainable world. Most of the projects on animal conservation so far often insist that human impacts should be totally eliminated to save endangered animals, and not many efforts were made on scientific works to reveal how human impacts can be controlled for animal conservation. My aim here is to give scientific evidences for the way to balance human impacts and animal conservation.
I have been working on frogs in Amami Island, where people have struggles with how to conserve endangered rare species. Because the island is going to be listed as world natural heritage, this theme is exactly in need there. I am trying to build a conservation model to show how much of human impacts (such as forestry or road construction) will lead to a certain degree of decrease in rare species of animals, and show which path way should be considered first.

In order to show what would happen if animals are lost, it is necessary to understand the roles of animals in ecosystems. Because amphibians move between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems as its nature, they have multiple roles both in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems as well as being a subsidy to each other. My interests are to know these roles of amphibians with its complex life cycle.

About TUAT's tenure-track program

This tenure-track program allows us to spend much time on our own research while obtaining teaching experiences as well. I really appreciate my position with warm encouragements and supports from mentors and professors. Furthermore, some opportunities are provided to know other tenure-track fellows of my age so that we can share information, which will be helpful when planning research life and managing laboratory under this program.

Future aspirations

I would appreciate all the favors given by this program and will do my best to meet their expectations. Coming few years will give me much time on research and a precious period for making research foundation on which I could build my lifetime’s work.