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Ecosystems: Land, Water and Air (ELWA)

All major components of our environment - land, water, and air - have been affected in pervasive and complex ways by the intensifying resource use of the growing human population. Resulting global and regional changes in climate, material flows and biogeochemical cycles, disturbance regimes, and biodiversity loss have detrimental effects on the very ecosystem services that support local communities, national economies, and overall human well-being. To help restore ecosystem functions and address the negative interactions and feedback loops between human society, environment, and ecosystems, we have assembled a large group of scientists across multiple disciplines who address these critical issues. GPES students in this Study Area integrate multidisciplinary approaches by working with faculty experts to contribute better understanding and novel solutions relevant to society-environment-ecosystem interactions.

Examples of the tools and concepts that are commonly used in Ecosystems: Land, Water and Atmosphere Study Area include:

  • Biodiversity and conservation biology
  • Environmental data science
  • Restoration science and ecosystem management
  • Environmental monitoring and modeling
  • Geospatial analyses and remote sensing
  • Global environmental change
  • Landscape management, design and planning
  • Sustainable resource management
  • Traditional ecological knowledge
  • Water and wetland resources

Participating Faculty in Ecosystems: Land, Water and Atmosphere (ELWA)

Name Email Research Keywords
Colin Beier long-term ecosystem monitoring, ecosystem services, watershed biogeochemistry, greenhouse gas fluxes, soil microclimate
Eddie Bevilacqua natural resources sampling, biometrics, forest modeling, geospatial technologies, geographic information systems, spatial analysis, tree-ring analysis
Gregory Boyer water quality monitoring, harmful algal blooms, lake remediation and HAB mitigation
Russ Briggs site productivity, soil quality, water quality
Margaret Bryant socio-ecological systems, spatial planning, urban ecology, climate adaptive design, interdisciplinary problem-focused research and practice
Emanuel Carter UNESCO biosphere reserves, urban ecosystem design
Mariela Cavo  Watershed management, environmental economics, forest economics, valuation of ecosystem services, payment for ecosystem services, rural development. 
Jiajue Chai  Atmospheric chemistry, biogeochemistry, climate change, stable isotopes, reactive nitrogen cycling, urban air quality and sustainability, development of air monitoring techniques and instrumentation
Jonathan Cohen wildlife habitat restoration, wildlife population dynamics, early successional forest and coastal wildlife habitat
Dan Cronan   Alternative Futures Analysis, Scenario Planning (Urban and Regional), GIS and Geospatial Analysis, Urban Sustainability, Stormwater Green Infrastructure
Doug Daley Solid waste, stormwater, green infrastructure, compost, sustainable materials management, environmental restoration, ecological engineering
Stewart Diemont agroecology, restoration ecology, traditional ecological knowledge, urban ecosystems, biocultural restoration, agroforestry
Klaus Doelle municipal, industrial and urban waste water treatment, phytoremediation, bioengineering, process design and development
Martin Dovciak biodiversity conservation, ecology, ecosystem management and restoration, forest ecosystems, global environmental change
John Drake forest ecosystem science, carbon cycling, climate extremes, tree physiology, forest climate feedbacks
Joshua Drew conservation biology, coastal communities, community ecology, historical ecology, ichthyology
Theodore Endreny modeling watershed restoration, green infrastructure, eco-hydraulics, i-Tree Hydro software development
John Farrell aquatic ecology, fisheries science and management, aquatic habitat restoration, wetlands, invasive species
Danilo Fernando genomics, phylogenetics, genetic diversity, rare plant conservation, propagation, restoration, development
Christine Georgakakos water quality, sustainable agriculture, residue transport, antimicrobials 
Jennifer Goff  environmental microbiology; microbial ecophysiology; genomics and evolution; heavy metals; bioremediation
Cole Gross  Sustainable ecosystem management, soil health, soil carbon, ecosystem carbon cycling, greenhouse gas fluxes, soil-carbon-climate feedbacks, soil-root interactions, agroforestry
John Hassett water chemistry, atmospheric chemistry, organic contaminants, sampling technology
Robin Kimmerer bryophytes, biocultural restoration, botany
Charles Kroll environmental modeling, water resources planning and management, hydrology, ecosystem services, ecosystem restoration
Eun Kyung Lee  Air pollution; environmental health disparities; exposure assessment; air dispersion modeling; spatial analysis
Huiting Mao atmospheric chemistry, air quality, regional to global budgets of trace gases, long range transport, continental export, climate change
Stacy McNulty forest ecology, phenology, vertebrate ecology, long-term change, biodiversity conservation, ecosystem function, Northern Forest
Jaime Mirowsky environmental health, exposure assessment, air pollution, cardiopulmonary health, in vitro models, environmental noise, epidemiology, public health
Sharon Moran human dimensions of watershed restoration, sociotechnical systems, co-production of knowledge, contaminants of emerging concern, citizen science
Tim Morin forests, wetlands, ecosystem carbon cycling, ecosystem modeling
Giorgos Mountrakis geospatial modeling, remote sensing, land science, land dynamics, machine learning
Lee Newman phytoremediation, environmental toxicology, plant microbe interactions, hyperspectral imagining
Aaron Ninokawa ocean acidification, chemical modification by ecosystem engineers, community metabolism, climate change ecophysiology
Madeline Nyblade  Water justice; community-based participatory research; climate and landcover change impacts and adaptation; Indigenous Nation - University collaborations; research ethics; critical history of earth science
Nicholas Pflug aquatic chemistry, photochemistry, organic contaminants, chemical cues and pheromones, and fate processes.
Leanne Powers aquatic photochemistry, chemical oceanography, biogeochemistry, dissolved organic matter, reactive oxygen species, and ocean optics.
Lindi Quackenbush remote sensing, geospatial analysis, land cover classification and characterization, riparian cover mapping
Roxanne Razavi freshwater ecosystems, environmental toxicology, invasive species, aquatic conservation
Bahram Salehi remote Sensing, machine learning and AI, Google Earth Engine, wetlands inventory and change, forest biomass, land cover land change
Kim Schulz freshwater ecosystems, ecological stoichiometry, invasive species, aquatic ecosystem restoration, aquatic conservation
Michael Schummer wetland restoration, wetland design, wetland ecology, early successional, biodiversity, human dimensions, recreation
Theresa Selfa sustainable agriculture, payment for ecosystems services, cultural ecosystems services, urban gardens
Richard Ross Shaker Environmental & sustainability indicators, sustainable development, landscape ecology, global change; ecological restoration, applied statistics, spatial analysis & modeling
Jamie Shinn  Environmental governance and policy, climate change adaptation, water-society relationships, flooding,  political ecology, disaster response and recovery
Steve Stehman environmental sampling, land cover monitoring, map accuracy assessment
John Stella riparian and stream ecology, restoration, watershed management, ecological modeling, dendroecology, arid-land and Mediterranean ecosystems
Wendong Tao ecosystem-based wastewater treatment, nutrient recovery from wastewater, anaerobic digestion, microbial ecology of waste treatment systems
Mark Teece marine systems, freshwater systems, food webs
Timothy Volk agroforestry, short rotation woody crops, phytoremediation, shrub willow, landscape design
John Wagner applied analytical and conceptual mathematical economic modeling, sustainable management, use of forest and natural resources
Endong Wang green infrastructure
Jill Weiss socio-ecological systems, landscape-scale conservation initiatives, natural resources management, alpine zone
Ruth Yanai Multiple-element limitation in northern hardwood ecosystems, quantifying uncertainty in ecosystem studies, and REDD+ carbon accounting for climate mitigation
Yaqi You environmental microbiology, microbial ecology and evolution, biogeochemistry, environmental health
Nathan Young Hydrology, hydrogeology, ecohydrology, soil physics 
Stephen B. Shaw influence of climate change on hydrology, beaver dam analogs and stream restoration, vegetative water use and sap flux monitoring