• Director, Center for Ecological Planning and Design, College of Architecture + Planning
  • Associate Director, Global Change and Sustainability Center
  • Associate Professor (Clinical), City & Metropolitan Planning


  • BA, Geography and Environmental Studies, McGill University
  • PhD., Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado. Project: Pollinators in an urbanizing environment: Effects of suburban sprawl on a grassland bee assemblage



I am a landscape and urban ecologist. As a scientist in a planning department, much of my work centers on bridging the gap between academic research and real-world planning and design applications, that is, between “ways of knowing” and “ways of doing”. My research interests focus topically on the ecological, economic and social roles of nature and natural systems in and around cities and on understanding human settlements as complex, adaptive, social-ecological systems. I work currently in two main areas: 1) green infrastructure-related questions ranging from the ecological processes occurring within stormwater bioretention systems to regional green infrastructure planning and implementation and 2) developing processes that link people, knowledge, and resilience in the face of change, often having to do with infrastructure systems. Much of my research also includes a focus on urban water issues in the urbanizing landscapes of the Western US.  I teach courses on urban ecology, systems thinking, and green infrastructure.