Research Interests

I am interested in the role of both intraspecific genetic variation and the environment in structuring populations and communities.  Specifically, my research addresses how the genetics of foundation species can influence higher levels of organization such as community assembly.  To this end, I study the genetics of aspen populations and their associated arthropod communities using both experimental and observational approaches.  I also investigate how various environmental factors transform aspen phenotypes and subsequently alter interactions among aspen and its insect herbivores.

Research Themes:

[1] Identifying genetic regions in aspen associated with phenotypic traits that influence insect communities (for more information click here).

"WisAsp" Genetic Mapping Common Garden

“WisAsp” Genetic Mapping Common Garden

[2] Investigating the roles of both genotype and environment on tree growth and aspen-insect interactions.


“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find that is bound fast by a thousand invisible cords that cannot be broken to everything in the universe” — John Muir