Past, Present, & Future Changes to Forests
I study how multiple aspects of global change, such as climate and disturbance, impact the composition and functioning of forests. Warming temperatures, increasing CO2, combined with changes in precipitation, disturbance, and land use regimes all indicate that future forests will be different than what we see today, but we are not sure how. My research tackles this issue by answering three main questions:
- Why are forests where they are and how they are today?
- How and why have forests changed in the past?
- How will the distribution, composition, and services provided by forests change in the future?
Within these broad questions, my research tends to focus on understanding the causes and consequences of species distributions and connecting patterns with processes across spatial and temporal scales. I specialize in combining large empirical data from observation and experimental field studies with ecosystem and statistical modeling. The goal of my work is to provide actionable information for the scientific, land management, and policy communities.
Current and Ongoing Projects:
- Phenology of Species from Around the World (Phenology of The Morton Arboretum’s Living Collections)
- Temporal Dynamics of Oak Ecosystems in the Midwest
- Understanding and Modeling Forest Change over the Past Millenium (PalEON Project)
- Climate influences on tree growth and establishment in the central Appalachians
- Effects of Experimental Warming on Early Successional Forest Communities