Geographical Ecology (Strategic Research Initiative)
Many of ecology’s most fundamental patterns manifest at scales of landscapes and continents. Biology faculty are collaborating with colleagues across campus to establish an international center of excellence exploring the geography of our evolving biosphere. We combine the tools of ecology, evolution, and biogeography to explore how water, atmosphere, and biogeochemistry shape biodiversity and ecosystem services. We build the theoretical and empirical foundations of geographical ecology to better predict biotic change and steward our natural resources and services.
Geographical Ecology is a rapidly growing and integrative discipline. We train our students to explore unique and useful connections among genomics and physiological ecology, population and community ecology, and biogeography and macroecology toward answering big questions. Our students have access to our faculty’s deep knowledge of biodiversity via the Oklahoma Biological Survey, the Bebb Herbarium, and the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History. They have access to the technological tools and datasets of of the OSCER supercomputing cluster, the Advanced Center for Genome Technology, the National Weather Center, The Climate Survey, the Water Survey, and the South Central Climate Science Center. They work around the globe, combining laboratory studies, field experiments, and comparative methods to answer their questions. Our students are supported by a variety of sources, from NSF graduate fellowships and DIGGs, DOE GANN fellowships, research and teaching assistantships.
Eli Bridge, Assistant Professor: behavior, endocrinology, life history and migration ecology
Richard E. Broughton, Professor and Chair: Molecular evolution and phylogenetics of fishes
K. David Hambright, Professor: limnology, harmful algae, climate and land use effects on water quality
Michael E. Kaspari, Presidential Professor: biogeography of communities, macroecology, soil ecology
Jeffrey F. Kelly, Professor, Conservation Biology, avian biology, migration ecology
Hayley Lanier, Assistant Curator of Mammalogy and Assistant Professor. Evolution and ecology of mammals, phylogeography
Katharine Marske, Assistant Professor: Comparative phylogeography, community ecology, and macroecology
Cameron D. Siler, Associate Professor and Associate Curator of Herpetology, SNOMNH: Evolutionary biology, biogeography, herpetology
Caryn C. Vaughn, Presidential Professor: Stream ecology; conservation biology
Xiangming Xiao, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor, ecosystems ecology, remote sensing, global change biology