Kathleen M Bergen

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Kathleen M Bergen, PhD, is Associate Research Scientist in the School for Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Dr. Bergen currently has interim administrative oversight of the SEAS Environmental Spatial Analysis Laboratory (ESALab) and is interim Director of the campus-wide Graduate Certificate Program in Spatial Analysis.

Prof. Bergen works in the areas of human dimensions of environmental change; remote sensing, GIS and biodiversity informatics; and environmental health and informatics. Her focus is on combining field and geospatial data and methods to study the pattern and process of ecological systems, biodiversity and health. She also strives to build bridges between science and social science to understand the implications of human actions on the social and natural systems of which we are a part. She teaches courses in Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems. Formerly she served as a founding member of the UM LIbrary’s MIRLYN implementation team, directed the University Map Collection, and set up the M-Link reference information network.

Lydia Beaudrot

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Lydia Beaudrot, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, and Postdoctoral Scholar – Michigan Society of Fellows at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Prof. Beaudrot combines observational data with ecoinformatic and modeling approaches to investigate questions at the interface of ecological theory and conservation biology. The primary goals of my research are to 1) identify the mechanisms that structure ecological communities 2) understand how tropical mammals and birds respond to global change and 3) apply results to biodiversity conservation.

In an era of “Big Data,” in which data-driven decisions are pivotal to modern society, the field of conservation trails behind, with critical decisions based on expert opinion, biased information and irreproducible research. Global conservation targets require long-term monitoring of biodiversity trends, and a new paradigm for how these data are collected, shared and synthesized. Prof. Beaudrot conducts research with the TEAM Network, the Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network, which is a partnership between Conservation International, the Smithsonian Institute and the Wildlife Conservation Society. She creates robust analytics to assess biodiversity change and provide scalable solutions for a vital paradigm shift in conservation biology. She is particularly interested in the effects of global change on tropical biodiversity. One of the ways that she assesses this is by monitoring the population status of ~250 mammal and bird species with the Wildlife Picture Index. See wpi.teamnetwork.org.

William Currie

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William Currie, PhD, is Professor in the School of Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Prof. Currie is interested in interdisciplinary approaches to the study of the environment and the development of sustainability science. His research and scholarly interests include ecosystem ecology, biogeochemistry including carbon and nutrient cycling, physics and energetics, landscapes and coupled human-natural systems, land conservation and management, biofuels and food security, computational modeling and simulation, synthesis using models, and philosophical foundations of modeling.

Prof. Currie has a background in ecosystem ecology, biogeochemistry (nutrient and carbon cycling), energetics, systems dynamics modeling and individual-based / agent-based modeling. He is interested in using our current understanding in these fields to investigate ecosystem change and dynamics in coupled human-environment systems.

Prof. Currie studies the linkages among carbon, nutrient, and water cycling and energy flows and transformations in terrestrial ecosystems and human-environment systems.  He is interested in using our current understanding of ecosystems to explore creative, new understanding of the two-way interactions in human-environment systems.  He works at scales from field plots to landscapes, collaborating with other researchers and students to integrate understanding and build models for synthesis.  The goal of this research is to contribute to the developing field of sustainability science using an approach that grows out of ecosystem science.

 

Daniel Brown

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Daniel Brown, PhD, is Professor in the School of Environment and Sustainability and holds a secondary appointment as Research Professor in the Survey Research Center, Institute for Social Research. Prof. Brown is also Director of the Environmental Spatial Analysis Laboratory.

Prof. Brown’s research interests focus on land use change and its effects on ecosystems and on human vulnerability. This work connects a computer-based simulation (e.g., agent-based modeling) of land-use-change processes with GIS and remote sensing based data on historical patterns of landscape change and social surveys. Brown and colleagues are working to couple these models with GIS-based data and other models to evaluate consequences of change. They are also working to understand the ways in which land-use decisions are made. Collaborative research investigate the effects of spatial and social neighborhoods on the physical and social risks on human health.

Though most of Professor Brown’s earlier work has been in the US, his work is becoming increasingly international, with projects in China, Africa, and India.

Research on land-cover and land-use change is funded by the NASA Land-Cover Land-Use Change Program and by programs at the National Science Foundation on Human and Social Dynamics (HSD) and the Dynamics of Coupled Natural and Human Systems (CNH) and conducted in collaboration with colleagues in SEAS and in the Center for the Study of Complex Systems. Research on spatial aspects of public health is conducted in collaboration with colleagues in the School of Public Health and funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the US Environmental Protection Agency.