Principal Investigator

Carla Staver, Assistant Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology

[CV] [contact]

Postdoctoral Associates and Fellows
Josh Daskin is a community and conservation ecologist whose research focuses on (1) how seasonal flooding affects vegetation structure, animal dispersal, and human uses of tropical ecosystems, and (2) how war and its aftermath affect wildlife populations, habitat loss, and investment in conservation. At Yale, Josh holds a Donnelley Post-Doctoral Environmental Fellowship. He completed his Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University. [website] [contact]

Maggie Simon is a theoretical ecologist interested in how spatial and temporal variability affect system behavior. She will receive her PhD from UCLA where she studied how temporal variability in population-level thermal traits influence species coexistence. At Yale, she will use dynamical models to explore how spatial processes mediate coexistence between savannah and forest biomes. [contact]

Yong Zhou is a soil biogeochemist and interested in how soil biogeochemical cycles respond to global environmental changes. He received his PhD from Texas A&M where he studied savanna dynamics and their influence on landscape-scale C, N, and P biogeochemistry. At Yale, he will combine remote sensing to estimate changes in woody cover in African savannas, field work to quantify belowground C stocks, and modeling to establish linkages between the two. [contact]

Graduate Students

Maddy Case is interested in interactions between plant communities, disturbance, and global change. She is excited about both empirical and theoretical approaches to plant ecology. Maddy received her A.B. in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology and a Certificate in Environmental Studies from Princeton University. She has done field work in plant ecology in North America, South America, and Africa, and spent a year as a 2012-2013 Luce Scholar developing environmental education programs in Vietnam. [contact]

Nikunj Goel is interested in spatial and temporal boundary interactions between savanna and forest. His research focuses on understanding encroachment of forest into savanna and vice versa because of rainfall, grazing, and fires, using a combination of theoretical and empirical approaches. He received his bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Science (Bangalore) with a major in Physics and a minor in Environmental Science and was a recipient of the Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana (KVPY) fellowship (2011-2015) in basic sciences from the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. [contact] [website]
Arielle Biro is interested in understanding how plant-microbe interactions can contribute to savanna-forest ecosystem dynamics. She aims to understand how microbial communities can vary between savannas and forests, differentially impacting soil processes, plant growth, and ecosystem function. Arielle received her B.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Binghamton University, where she had worked on legume-rhizobia symbioses. [contact]
Past Lab Grad Students and Postdocs
2014-2017, postdoc. Julie Aleman. Visiting Scientist, University of Montreal.