Dr. Ben Rubin
Forest ecology, landscape pathology, forest health monitoring, GIS, spatial statistics
Position: Assistant Professor
Office: BGS 3072
Phone: 519-661-2111 x 87475
Web site: http://publish.uwo.ca/~brubin2/
I am interested in forest disease and disturbance as large landscape phenomena (an area of research referred to as “landscape pathology”). For example, if land management decisions made on a series of individual ownerships are all based on similar scientific recommendations and economic forces of the time, they may impact the larger landscape in unintended ways. The process of extrapolating from knowledge gained at a smaller spatial scale to an understanding of larger-scale consequences is often complicated. For example, consider the problem of evaluating the impact of an exotic forest disease in terms of the potential tree mortality across a large landscape. One must integrate estimates of the proportion of the landscape affected at varying disease intensities with estimates of the probable tree mortality at all intensities. Next, to provide the appropriate ecological context, one must compare the cumulative mortality with and without the disease of interest to a baseline or “normal” mortality rate for the population.
My research aims to deepen our understanding of the principles of landscape pathology and to develop tools for large-scale ecological monitoring. To accomplish these goals, I use data from large-scale surveys and forest inventories, as well as Geographic Information Systems (GIS) map layers of related ecological attributes (e.g. soil characteristics, elevation, land cover, etc). I also use statistical and simulation modeling techniques to estimate or make predictions about phenomena which are impractical or impossible to measure.
This page was last updated on
January 30, 2008
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