I am an evolutionary ecologist who discovered birds as an undergrad after growing up a nature-oblivious (sub)urban kid near Bombay, went chasing after vanishing wildernesses in remote mountains as a graduate student, and returned to the city grown up as a reconciliation ecologist! I study ecological and evolutionary processes in more or less human dominated ecosystems with the goal of applying our understanding of these processes towards reconciling biodiversity conservation with human development. I am an Associate Professor in the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program for Leadership in Public Science, and in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC.
Earlier, in Fresno, California, I ran the Central Valley Café Scientifique, a monthly conversation that brings science to the cultural milieu of California’s Central Valley. I founded the Café in 2007 and it continues to bring people together around various topics in science on a monthly basis. in 2014, I also started a radio show, “Science: A Candle In The Dark“, broadcast on 88.1FM KFCF Fresno’s Free Speech Radio station on the 4th Tuesday of every month at 3:30 PM Pacific Time. Past episodes of the show are available on the podcast (iTunes; direct feed).
Here’s an alternative, brief, description of some of my work using only some of the ten hundred most commonly used words in the English language:
I study how city people use water, often too much, and what that means for other living things who also live in cities. I study how many flying animals and green living things are able to live in the cities of the world. I find that fewer living things may be found inside cities than outside, but more than people expect. Many living things have found surprising ways to live, and do well, in cities besides people. I look for new and old ways for people to share the world with other living things.