Ph.D., Ecology, University of California Davis, 2015
B.A., Molecular and Cellular Biology, minor in Spanish, Vanderbilt University, 2007
Research Interests / Specializations:
agroecology, soil ecology and biogeochemistry, plant-soil-microbe interactions
How can reliance on biodiversity and ecological processes create productive, resilient, and healthy agricultural systems? This question frames my overarching goal, which is to support transformation of our agricultural system from one reliant on intensive, synthetic inputs to one based on ecological processes. In particular, I am interested in how diversified, biologically-based farms affect soil health, resource-use-efficiency, and resilience to environmental change, especially drought. This research lies at the intersection of agroecology, soil ecology, and biogeochemistry with a focus on plant-soil-microbe interactions. I use several approaches, including on-farm research across agricultural landscapes, historical data synthesis from long-term trials, and field and greenhouse experiments. Through collaboration with farmers, agronomists, conservation biologists, social scientists, and economists I aim for a multidimensional perspective on agroecological transformations.