My lab's broad research interest is how animal species respond to past and present environmental changes. The approaches we use to study these questions are varied and include direct inference through examination of fossil and modern species, as well as indirect inference using molecular phylogenetic, ecological niche modeling, and morphometric approaches. We examine multiple aspects of response, including distributional, molecular, morphological and functional.
Because so much of the work in lab uses primary species and population occurrence data (when and where species and populations occur) available from natural history collections, we are very involved in ecological and biodiversity informatics initiatives to increase the quality, availability and utility of such datasets at the global scale. Our particular informatics interest is building online Geographic Information Systems so that anyone may access, visualize and analyze legacy and current biodiversity and environmental data. I primarily work on gastropod and bivalve molluscs but students work on a variety of organisms including mammals, viruses and ferns.