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Edward Brzostek, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and Associate Chair for Graduate Studies

Research and Teaching Interests

Biogeochemistry, Ecosystem Modeling, Global Change, and Plant-Microbial Interactions


Dr. Brzostek's lab research program seeks to understand how interactions between plants and soil microbes influence carbon and nitrogen cycling in terrestrial ecosystems, and how these interactions will impact ecosystem responses to global change. I focus on temperate forests because N limits the strength of this important global sink for atmospheric CO2. 

Brzostek is particularly interested in linking the diverse strategies trees use to promote microbial activity and nutrient availability in soils with the consequences of these strategies on ecosystem carbon storage. To do this, we integrate observations of plant-microbial interactions in the field with results from experiments to parameterize and develop new modeling frameworks that can be integrated into larger Earth System Models. Currently, research in the lab is focused on three broad themes: (1) impacts of tree species on coupled carbon and nutrient cycles, (2) response of temperate forests to drought, and (3) using the empirical data we generate to parameterize new processes into ecosystem models (i.e., model-experiment feedbacks or MODEX).

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Brzostek Lab