Research in my lab uses comparative phylogeography to understand two fundamental questions: how have past environmental changes affected the distribution of biodiversity, from diversification within and between species to the formation of communities and geographic ranges, and how can we use these past responses to better predict the consequences of contemporary environmental change. In particular, we are interested in using phylogeography to unravel the complex regional history of communities, and the role of dispersal in shaping large-scale biogeographical patterns.
PhD: 2010, University of Auckland
MS: 2004, Montana State University
BA: 2001, Luther College
My research background includes a blend of phylogeography and macroecology, with their respective foci on the detailed evolutionary histories of particular lineages versus big-picture explanations for large-scale geographic patterns—opposite ends of the evolution-ecology spectrum. Thus, I strive to relate data and questions across disciplines within evolutionary ecology. I have utilized a broad spectrum of study systems, from beetles to mammoths, and incorporate both data synthesis and field-based approaches to understanding the processes which shape species’ distributions and drive their responses to global change.