I develop simulation models to forecast future plant and animal population trends, understand the impacts of multiple interacting disturbance regimes, and to contribute new theory and tools to disciplines including landscape ecology, conservation biology, landscape genetics, and disease ecology.
My research fills critical technical and scientific gaps in conservation biology, landscape ecology, and related fields. Central to these disciplines is the quantification of human impacts on plant and animal populations, and forecasting how species’ viability will change in the future. Computer models are indispensable tools used in these studies, and only mechanistic simulation models can provide defensible forecasts of future condition. My work centers on the development and application of state-of-the-art models for these purposes. In addition to landscape ecology and conservation biology, I am conducting research in landscape and conservation genetics, in disease ecology, and involving linkages between human health and wildlife biology. My work is widely recognized, and I have collaborators at universities, government agencies, and NGOs in many countries around the world.
Teaching has not been a significant focus of my professional life, but I hope to emphasize teaching more in the future. I frequently give guest lectures in courses at the University of Washington and at OSU, provide many seminars, and design and hold occasional workshops on model construction and application.
I spent my childhood in both California’s Santa Cruz mountains, and in Eugene, OR. My background is in population and conservation biology, ecology, mathematics, and physics. I hold B.S. degrees in both math and physics from the University of California (Santa Cruz). I earned a M.S. degree in applied mathematics and a Ph.D. in ecology from the University of Washington. I completed my Ph.D. in 1995, and joined the EPA in 1997 after serving as an assistant professor at Oregon State University. My current research is designed to address pressing but stubborn questions in conservation biology and landscape ecology.
Outreach and Extension
I do not have an extension appointment, but I do a great deal of outreach work. I work closely with a large number of graduate students and researchers nationally and internationally. My research web site receives in excess of 3000 visits per year, with more than half being new visitors, and about 20% coming from outside the U.S. I train large numbers of researchers on the development and use of modern simulation models for landscape ecology, conservation biology, and other disciplines. And develop and hold workshops on model construction and application, and work closely with agencies like the US Fish and Wildlife service, and their international counterparts.