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Faculty contribute to the interdisciplinary Center for Sustainability and Master of Science in Sustainable Tourism in many and varied ways reflecting the multidisciplinary interest on the campus in sustainable tourism and a generous willingness to engage in the research, teaching and outreach activities of the center. Examples of these contributions include service on the MS-ST Faculty Graduate Committee, on thesis and non-thesis projects, on search committees, in recruiting and mentoring students, on external funding activities, on special projects and initiatives, in teaching core courses, on interdisciplinary research and publication efforts and on hosting visiting scholars, among others. Faculty affiliates are encouraged to cross over with other disciplines in research interests to the extent possible in order to become fully aware of, and take advantage of, the many interdisciplinary approaches and opportunities.
Coastal Management and Biodiversity
Broad-scale human adaptation to climate change will become increasingly necessary in the coming decades; thus, it is critical that during this period of historically unprecedented ecological change, we develop meaningful linkages across scientific and decision-making arenas necessary to anticipate climate-related changes and invest strategically to increase socio-ecological resilience. My interests as an applied scientist are to explore opportunities that meet coastal needs for climate-related decision support enhancing communication with coastal managers and policy makers for more extensive incorporation of human dimensions into existing regional ecosystem models and coastal simulations with the aim to build groundwork for the development of an integrated socio-ecological model.
My academic experience lies in large-scale approaches to ecosystem analysis. Using simulation modeling as a research tool, I have focused on investigating how coastal areas respond to diverse impacts, natural and man-made. I have led several multidisciplinary teams in the development of ecosystem models integrating landscape ecology to assess different approaches to coastal resource management. In the past, I have been active in several modeling efforts that span from plant productivity, fish migration, medium-sized experiments, to landscape simulation focused on understanding processes in wetlands and tropical watersheds. My current projects include the development of a sea-level response simulation for coastal North Carolina using High Performance Computing systems, a modeling framework for Louisiana's coastal zone, the implementation of landscape models for the Virginia Coastal Reserve estuarine complex (an LTER site), and a nutrient/forest model for the swamps in Maurepas, Louisiana. Other research sites I had the opportunity to work on include the Everglades in Florida, Padilla Bay in Washington, Liberty Island on the San Jacinto Delta, California, and several coastal lagoons in the Mexican Caribbean.
(21 peer-reviewed journal articles, 5 peer-reviewed book chapters, 4 peer-reviewed reports, and 1 book review. Presentations: 23 invited, 55 regular, and 4 poster sessions.)