The goal of my research is to understand better Sustainability Science, which I address using three different approaches: network analysis, integrated environmental assessment, and complex systems science. Sustainability Science is a critically important area that encompasses a broad range of research interests including ecosystem services, biodiversity, natural resources, human cultures, and specific environments. I use network analysis to investigate thermodynamic sustainability indicators. These indicators are often referred to as ecological goal functions, which are used to describe the direction of development that ecosystem properties such as energy or exergy flow, biomass production, or respiration undergo during succession. These metrics help understand the overall behavior and health of that system and its response due to perturbations. A main advantage to using network analysis is the ability to view the ecosystem as a connected web of interactions. I like to think that it is a more holistic approach because it considers the behavior of individual compartments as embedded in a larger network of interactions. I am also interested in how ecosystems interact with human systems and vice versa. Integrated environmental assessment is an interdisciplinary and social process linking knowledge and action in public policy aimed at identifying and analyzing interactions of natural and human processes which determine both the current and future states of environmental quality.
Feel free to contact me if you are interested in these areas and are considering the graduate program at Towson University.
I have also worked each summer since 2002 in the Advanced Systems Analysis Program at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria (photo). IIASA is a leading international research institute focusing on inter-disciplinary scientific studies on environmental, economic, technological and social issues in the context of human dimensions of global change.