The Natural Capital Project is led by an interdisciplinary team of core scientists and project leaders from Stanford, The Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, and the University of Minnesota. Strategic advisors and collaborators come from these four partner organizations as well as other institutions.
Gretchen Daily, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology
Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
Gretchen Daily, an ecologist whose work ranges from conservation science to environmental policy analysis to public outreach, is one of the founders of the Natural Capital Project and serves as its chief emissary to financial and government leaders. She is working to develop a scientific basis - and political and institutional support - for managing Earth's life-support systems. She has published ~200 scientific and popular articles and her most recent books are The New Economy of Nature: The Quest to Make Conservation Profitable, with journalist Katherine Ellison, and Natural Capital: Theory and Practice of Mapping Ecosystem Services, co-edited with several colleagues. She serves on the boards of The Nature Conservancy (and its Science Council) and the Beijer International Institute for Ecological Economics, and at Stanford she is Director of the Center for Conservation Biology.
Jonathan Foley, Ph.D.
Director of the Institute on the Environment (IonE)
Jonathan Foley is the director of the Institute on the Environment (IonE) at the University of the Minnesota, where he is a professor and McKnight Presidential Chair in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior. He also leads the IonE's Global Landscapes Initiative. Foley's work focuses on the sustainability of our civilization and the global environment. He and his students have contributed to our understanding of global food security, global patterns of land use, the behavior of the planet's climate, ecosystems and water cycle, and the sustainability of the biosphere. This work has led him to be a regular advisor to large corporations, NGOs and governments around the world.
Jon Hoekstra, Ph.D.
Vice President & Chief Scientist, World Wildlife Fund
Jon Hoekstra leads WWF's Conservation Science Program, a team of 30 scientists and professionals that work with the more than 400 scientists across the WWF Network to provide cutting-edge research and technical assistance to WWF's global conservation programs. Jon brings a unique perspective to WWF's science program from his career experience with NGOs, government agencies and higher education. He served as Senior Scientist at The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Science Director for TNC's Washington State Chapter, and has worked with the federal government at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service. Jon holds a B.S. and M.S. in biological sciences from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Washington where he now maintains a faculty appointment.
Peter Kareiva, Ph.D.
Chief Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
Natural Capital Project co-founder Peter Kareiva is the project’s liaison with The Nature Conservancy, while also offering strategic vision and leadership. Peter Kareiva’s interests encompass agriculture, conservation, ecology, and the interface of science and policy. In addition to a long academic career, including faculty positions at Brown University, the University of California at Santa Barbara and elsewhere, he worked for NOAA Fisheries for three years, and was Director of the Northwest Fisheries Science Center Conservation Biology Division. Academically, Peter Kareiva is best known for contributions to insect ecology, landscape ecology, risk analysis, mathematical biology, and conservation. His current projects emphasize the interplay of human land-use and biodiversity, resilience in the face of global change, and evidence-based conservation.
Steve Polasky, Ph.D.
Professor of Ecological/Environmental Economics, University of Minnesota
Steve Polasky is one of the leaders of the Natural Capital Project's environmental service mapping and valuation effort. At the University of Minnesota, Steve Polasky holds the Fesler-Lampert Chair in Ecological/Environmental Economics. His research interests include biodiversity conservation, environmental services, integrating ecological and economic analysis, renewable energy, and game theory. Steve Polasky was the senior staff economist for environment and resources for the President's Council of Economic Advisers from 1998-1999, and served as associate editor and co-editor for the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management from 1996 to 2002. Today he's a member of the Environmental Economics Advisory Committee and the Committee on Valuing the Protection of Ecological Systems and Services for the Science Advisory Board of U.S. EPA and a member of The Nature Conservancy's Science Council.
Taylor Ricketts is Professor of Natural Resources & Environment and Director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont. Taylor's interests focus on the overarching question: How do we meet the needs of people and nature in an increasingly crowded, changing world? In his research and teaching, Taylor integrates natural and social sciences to address both fundamental scientific issues and real-world conservation problems. Taylor's recent work has focused on the economic benefits provided to people by forests, wetlands, reefs, and other natural areas. He is a co-founder of the Natural Capital Project, and, like Kareiva, provides strategic guidance. Taylor also served as Convening Lead Author for the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, a 5-year, UN-sponsored effort to assess global ecosystems and their contributions to human well-being. These and other collaborations are part of a continuing effort to link rigorous research with practical conservation and policy efforts worldwide. Before arriving at UVM in 2011, Taylor led World Wildlife Fund's Conservation Science Program for nine years, and he remains a senior fellow at WWF. He is the author of over 70 scientific publications, and his work has been featured in over 100 stories in more than 20 media outlets. Taylor received his B.A. in Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College and his Ph.D. in Biological Sciences at Stanford University.
Mary Ruckelshaus, Ph.D.
Mary Ruckelshaus oversees all work of the Natural Capital Project partnership including strategy, coordination, fundraising, communications, and hiring. She is based in Seattle, WA, where she previously led the Ecosystem Science Program at NOAA's NW Fisheries Science Center. Prior to that, she was an Assistant Professor of biological sciences at The Florida State University (1994-1997). The main focus of her recent work is on developing ecological models including estimates of the flow of environmental services under different management regimes in marine systems worldwide. Ruckelshaus serves on the Science Council of The Nature Conservancy and is a Trustee on its Washington Board, and is a past chair of the Science Advisory Board of the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS). She was Chief Scientist for the Puget Sound Partnership, a public-private institution charged with achieving recovery of the Puget Sound terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems. Ruckelshaus has a bachelor's degree in human biology from Stanford University, a master's degree in fisheries from the University of Washington, and a doctoral degree in botany, also from Washington.
Becky Chaplin-Kramer, Ph.D.
Becky Chaplin-Kramer leads the Natural Capital Project's freshwater and terrestrial team. She coordinates the model development and implementation of the InVEST tool, and she also is overseeing our first monitoring efforts to assess the biophysical and socioeconomic impacts of our work with Water Funds in Latin America. Her past work has combined conducting field experiments, modeling, and coordinating between researchers and practitioners at regional and local scales, through agricultural extension programs and the California Energy Commission's Public Interest Energy Research program on climate change. Becky is passionate about preserving ecosystems embedded in working landscapes and forging new alliances between conservationists and farmers, ranchers, and other land stewards. She earned her Ph.D. from University of California in Environmental Science, Policy & Management, and her M.S. and B.S. from Stanford University in Earth Systems Science.
Anne Guerry, Ph.D.
Anne Guerry leads the Natural Capital Project's marine work. She oversees the ongoing improvement and expansion of the marine InVEST tool and coordinates its application in diverse contexts worldwide. As part of the Leadership Team, Anne helps ensure that we are effectively achieving our strategic goals. Beyond nature's benefits, Anne's primary research interests are in community ecology, rocky intertidal systems, and ecosystem-based management. She received her PhD in Zoology from Oregon State University, her MS in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Maine, and her BA in Environmental Studies and English from Yale University. She has a lifelong love of the sea and believes that making explicit connections between human activities and their impacts on the full suite of nature's benefits can inform management decisions and yield better outcomes for the environment and for society.
Finance, Grants & Operations Manager
Gail Kaiser manages the Natural Capital Project's finance, grants and operations, combining her Silicon Valley experience as a product manager and consultant for globally dispersed product development and marketing, and volunteer work in local natural resource preservation. She has worked for IBM, Siemens, HP, and is on the board of the Committee for Green Foothills. She received her MBA and BS in Economics from Santa Clara University.
Lead - Science-Policy Interface
Emily manages the Natural Capital Project at World Wildlife Fund and is the project's liaison with the WWF network. She also leads NatCap's work at the science-policy interface. Emily's research interests include environmental valuation, and policies and payments for environmental services. She has applied environmental economics to important policy questions in more than sixteen countries in Asia, Europe, Africa, the Pacific, Caribbean and Latin America. Her research has led to nature's benefits being considered in decisions around land use planning in Indonesia, black pearl farming in the Cook Islands, aggregates extraction in the Marshall Islands, coral reef protection in Bermuda and forest biodiversity in Montserrat. She has built several environmental economics programs - leading research, developing tools, building capacity and providing technical and policy advice. She previously worked as Environmental Economics Advisor to the UK government, based at the Joint Nature Conservation Committee. In 2003-2005, she was awarded an Overseas Development Institute Fellowship as the Resource Economist at the Pacific Applied Geoscience Commission in Fiji. Emily received a Masters Degree in International Policy Studies from Stanford University, and a Bachelors Degree in Economics from Cambridge University.
Elizabeth Rauer is the Communications Manager for the Natural Capital Project. Ms. Rauer graduated from Brown University with a B.S. in Marine Biology, completed Duke University's Beaufort to Bermuda marine science and policy program, and received her master's degree in Marine Affairs and Policy from the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS) at the University of Miami. Her thesis examined reducing sea lion predation at Bonneville Dam and the biological, social, and economic factors associated with the conflict. She has also conducted research on red tides, sustainable seafood programs, and the diving behavior and physiology of turtles. Before joining the Natural Capital Project, she worked on marine protected areas, sustainable seafood, marine mammal conservation, and historical marine ecology as a Conservation Scientist and Communications Manager at Marine Conservation Institute.
Brian Robinson, Ph.D.
Brian Robinson is interested in how ecosystem services, and institutions to manage ecosystem services, impact livelihoods in developing countries. With the Natural Capital Project, Brian is developing InVEST modules on property rights, non-timber forest product harvesting and methods for modeling the distribution of ecosystem service benefits across a landscape. Although formally housed at the University of Minnesota, Brian is currently a visiting research economist in Beijing with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, working on empirical studies of ecosystem service valuation and PES programs in China. For Brian's doctoral work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he investigated the impact of management institutions on forest resources and livelihoods in Yunnan, China. Brian also holds masters degrees from MIT in City Planning and Environmental Engineering and a BS in Earth Sciences from Georgia Tech.
Rich Sharp, Ph.D.
Lead Software Developer
Rich Sharp is the lead software developer at the Natural Capital Project where he develops software to support ecosystem service assessment and planning. Previously he was an assistant professor of computer science at St. Lawrence University and earned his Ph.D. in computer science from The Ohio State University. His research interests include developing computational software for natural science applications, high performance computing applications, cloud computing, and scientific visualization.
Katie Arkema, Ph.D.
Katie Arkema is developing models for quantifying nature's benefits to people and leading several efforts to use them to advance the management of coastal and marine ecosystems. With the Belize team she is designing a Coastal Zone Management Plan to balance multiple uses, conserve habitats and sustain human well-being. She is particularly interested in the ability of coastal ecosystems to protect vulnerable communities and properties from sea level rise and storms and is using this information for climate adaptation in the US and Latin America. Katie is also developing the Habitat Risk Assessment model for mapping and forecasting the influence of human activities and climate change on ecosystems and services in several NatCap sites. Katie received her Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara and her B.A. in ecology with a minor in Latin American studies from Princeton University.
Nirmal Bhagabati leads WWF's applications of InVEST, an ecosystem services mapping and valuation software package developed by the Natural Capital Project, in priority sites in Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America. After completing undergraduate work in India in biology and computer science, he obtained his PhD at the State University of New York, for which he studied geographic variation in birds (Mexican Jays) in the southwestern US and northern Mexico. Subsequently, he was a visiting scientist at the Smithsonian Institution, and then worked as a bioinformatics analyst at The Institute for Genomic Research, where he developed software, analyzed data and trained biologists in data analysis. Nirmal also completed a degree in Sustainable Development and Conservation Biology from the University of Maryland. Prior to joining WWF, he worked with several environmental organizations, including the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, Conservation International, the National Wildlife Federation and World Wildlife Fund, on diverse projects including GIS-based analyses of human dimensions of conservation, biofuels, tropical deforestation and climate change policy, and landscape-level conservation planning.
Kelly Biedenweg, Ph.D.
Interdisciplinary Social Scientist
Kelly Biedenweg is exploring the identification and application of social and cultural values into natural resource management at different spatial scales and within different ecological and social environments in the Puget Sound. She has worked as a consultant for The Nature Conservancy, the U.S. Forest Service´s Pacific Northwest Research Station, the Institute for Culture and Ecology, TetraTech ARD, University of Washington, and King County to incorporate human dimensions research into natural resource planning. Biedenweg received a PhD in forest resources and conservation from the University of Florida, an M.S. in conservation biology from Antioch University new England, and a B.S. in marine ecology from Western Washington University. She is currently based in the Seattle area.
Seth Binder, Ph.D.
Seth is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Minnesota, where his research focuses on the valuation and management of ecosystem services and biodiversity. He is working with the Natural Capital Project to develop models to more closely link changes in ecosystem services to changes in human well-being, with an eye to distributional impacts. He is excited to be working with partners at the Millennium Challenge Corporation and WWF-Indonesia to apply these models to inform green development strategies in Sumatra, Indonesia. Seth earned his PhD in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics from Yale University's School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, where he developed a spatially-explicit, dynamic model of optimal timber harvest that accounts for the value of a variety of ecosystem services.
Leah Bremer, Ph.D.
Leah Bremer joined the Natural Capital Project as part of a team working to develop and implement hydrological, biodiversity, and socio-economic monitoring in water funds in Latin America in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy. Her dissertation research jointly analyzed the social and ecological outcomes of Payment for Ecosystem Services programs targeting highland Andean grasslands (páramos) in Ecuador. Prior to that she worked in environmental education and conservation in Hawai'i, California, and Washington. She received her Ph.D. from the UC Santa Barbara/San Diego State University Joint Doctoral Program in Geography, her M.S. in Conservation Biology from Victoria University in Wellington and Macquarie University, and her B.A. in Psychology from Northwestern University.
Nicolas is a member of the Software Team, working on updates to the latest version of InVEST software. He received a B.Sc and a M.Sc. in Computer Science from Sherbrooke University in Canada, an M.A. in Applied Mathematics from the Claremont Graduate University, and is completing a Ph.D. In Computational and Systems Biology at the Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences. His research interests include Ecoinformatics, Evolutionary Computation, and autonomous systems. Before joining the project, he was a research assistant at Michigan State University's BEACON center.
Software Engineer and GIS Analyst
Douglas Denu is a member of the Software Team, helping with the visualization of making InVEST platform independent. Doug helps to develop the InVEST 3.0 models and has worked on the timber model, wave energy model, and hydropower model. His goal is to get his Ph.D. in computer science, focusing on modeling and algorithms. He also has a strong interest and minor background in geology, which he hopes to merge with his computer science degree. He received his Bachelor degree in Computer Science with a minor in math at St. Lawrence University.
As a member of the Software Team, James Douglass works to support the existing InVEST family of tools, implement new models and reimplement existing models in an ArcGIS-independent platform. James is also heavily involved with the development of a user interface for InVEST. He received his B.S in Computer Science at St. Lawrence University.
Jennifer Duggan, Ph.D.
Jenny Duggan is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Washington and an ecologist with the Natural Capital Project. She is part of a team applying InVEST at three Department of Defense demonstration sites to inform their resource management and land-use policy. She is adapting and applying terrestrial models to assess habitat quality for species of conservation concern on and adjacent to installations under varied land-use scenarios. Jenny's primary research interests are in landscape ecology and conservation biology. She is especially interested in combining field and quantitative methods to address applied questions in the conservation and management of biodiversity. Jenny earned a Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution, and Ethology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a M.S. in Ecology from San Diego State University, and a B.S. in Zoology and Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Brad Eichelberger is part of a team that is adapting and applying InVEST at three Department of Defense demonstration sites to inform their resource management and land-use policy. He is applying and altering existing InVEST tools to meet the land manager's goals and has worked closely with the hydrology team to develop the freshwater InVEST models. Prior to joining the Natural Capital Project, he was an ecologist with the Natural Heritage Program in Pennsylvania and conducted research on rare species and associated habitat. Brad earned his M.S in applied ecology and conservation biology and a B.S. in biology from Frostburg State University and has received ESRI's Special Achievements in GIS award for his previous work.
Joe Faries earned a Bachelor's Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a minor in Economics as well as a Master's Degree in Coastal Engineering from the University of Delaware. Joe has gained experience with site design, storm water management, and stream restoration design, through internships and undergraduate research. His Master's research involved developing and implementing a sensor to measure nearbed sediment concentrations in the nearshore environment to obtain sediment transport rates. More recently, Joe has worked as a Coastal Engineer for URS Corporation and performed coastal and riverine floodplain modeling and mapping, as well as, damage assessments and disaster relief following Hurricane Irene as a technical specialist for FEMA. Joe joined the NatCap Marine team in January, 2012 as a research assistant and has aided in the development and application of the Coastal Protection models.
Yonas Ghile, Ph.D.
Yonas Ghile is leading the development of water models for the Natural Capital Project. He has extensive experience working on a wide array of water, climate and the environment. Prior to joining the Natural Capital Project he was a senior research associate at the University of Massachusetts and has carried out a number of research projects in the USA, Africa and Asia to address the contemporary global issues of extreme hydrological events, climate change and environmental degradation. In addition to his research experiences, he developed practical tools for flood risk prediction and climate risk assessment. His research interest include hydrologic predictability and river basin management tools, flood forecasting, water allocation mechanisms, transboundary river issues, water economics and policies, managing climate risks and decision scaling. He earned a Ph.D. in Hydrology from University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa and has won several fellowships.
Kathryn Glowinski is a member of the software team, working on refactoring InVEST models for platform independence. In particular she has worked on the InVEST 3.0 models for both Finfish Aquaculture and Overlap Analysis. Kathryn recieved her B.S in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics from St. Lawrence Univeristy.
Emily Ouray Goehring
Emily provides administrative and logistical support to the team. A recent transplant to California, she spent the last few austral summers supporting management at McMurdo Station, Antarctica and North American summers at a large Girl Scout resident camp in Missouri, most recently as Program Director. She has also worked for the Uda City Board of Education in Nara Prefecture, Japan, and for the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at Webster University. She holds a degree in East Asian Studies from the University of Wisconsin - Madison, and is always looking for opportunities to dust off her Chinese language skills with team members and collaborators.
Robert Griffin, Ph.D.
Rob's research interests are focused on the interaction of the economy and coastal and marine environments, and he is currently involved in valuation for an array of marine models as part of the Natural Capital Project. Rob received a B.A. in Economics and his Ph.D. in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics from the University of Rhode Island. During his graduate studies, Rob was a National Science Foundation IGERT fellow with an interdisciplinary research focus on coastal ecosystems. His research focused on the use of auctions for allocating rights to offshore energy resources. He has worked on projects for NOAA on fisheries policy, the US Department of the Interior on energy policy, and with the World Wildlife Fund on sustainable coastal development. He has international experience working for the New Zealand Ministry of Fisheries on a fisheries quota project and as a visiting scholar at the Institute for Marine Resources in Bremerhaven, Germany. As someone who enjoys the coast, Rob has spent close to a decade working in surf-rescue. He is PADI certified open water diver, and spends any free time in, on, or under the water.
Greg Guannel, Ph.D.
Greg Guannel is part of the Natural Capital's Marine Initiative, developing Marine InVEST's coastal protection module. Guannel's research involves the incorporation of natural habitat in the modeling of nearshore hydrodynamics as well as short- and long-term shoreline change. Greg received his Civil Engineer Degree from Ecole Superieure des Travaux Publics in Paris, France, his M.S. in Ocean Engineering from Texas A&M University, and his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from Oregon State University.
Bonnie Keeler works on ecosystem service assessment and valuation as a Ph.D. student at the University of Minnesota. Her research addresses the need for improved valuation of water quality-related services and better integration of biophysical and economic models to aid decision-making. She is also involved in projects assessing the economic and environmental consequences of bioenergy production in agricultural watersheds in the Midwestern U.S. Ms. Keeler received her M.S. in Ecology from the University of Minnesota and her B.A. in Biology from The Colorado College.
Choong-Ki (CK) Kim, Ph.D.
CK Kim is developing biological-physical coupled models for the Natural Capital Project to value the environmental services provided by coastal and marine ecosystems. He has worked extensively in numerical modeling studies with scales ranging from an estuary to a regional ocean. The focus has been on hydrodynamics, thermal discharge effects, air-sea interaction, storm surge prediction, transport processes of marine organisms, and coupled biological-physical processes. His most recent work covered Mobile Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Earlier work examined the Yellow Sea and Korea's South and East Seas. CK received a Masters Degree in Oceanography from Inha University in South Korea and a Ph.D. in Marine Sciences from the University of South Alabama.
Software Engineer and GIS Analyst
Martin Lacayo develops the Marine InVEST tools, a set of models for quantifying the services provided by coastal and marine ecosystems. His work focuses primarily on automating GIS processes for conservation modeling and improving the usability of spatial decision support tools. He received his M.S. from the Department of Geography at the San Diego State University and his B.A. in Computer Science from Macalester College.
Suzanne Langridge, Ph.D.
Suzanne Langridge is part of a team that is adapting and applying InVEST tools for application on coastal California. In particular, she is working with the Center for Ocean Solutions and The Nature Conservancy to determine how to integrate natural capital in climate adaptation planning at the local, regional, and state levels. Suzanne earned her Ph.D. from University of California Santa Cruz in Environmental Studies and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and her B.A. in biology from Smith College.
Shan Ma, Ph.D.
Shan Ma is part of a team adapting and applying InVEST at three Department of Defense demonstration sites to inform their resource management and land-use policy. In particular, she is leading the valuation of different ecosystem services of interest at the installations. Her research interests lie in non-market valuation of ecosystem services and its implications for real-world policy. Shan Ma earned her Ph.D. and M.S in agricultural, food and resource economics from Michigan State University, and a bachelor's degree in environmental economics and management from Renmin University of China. Shan Ma was a Mirzayan Science Policy Fellow with the Board on Agricultural and Natural Resources at the National Academies before joining the Natural Capital Project.
Lisa Mandle, Ph.D.
Ecosystem services modeler
Lisa Mandle is developing and improving models of terrestrial ecosystem services for InVEST and for applications in Latin America. She works with the Natural Capital Project team and its partners to assess and develop plans to mitigate the effects of development projects such as mining and transportation infrastructure on ecosystem services. Lisa is an ecologist and conservation biologist who studies the impact of land management decisions on biodiversity and the provision and distribution of ecosystem services. Her previous work combined field studies and modeling to examine trade-offs between non-timber forest product management and biodiversity conservation in India to inform local management decisions. She received a doctoral degree in botany from the University of Hawaii Manoa and holds bachelor's degrees in biology and anthropology from Brown University.
Ph.D. Candidate, University of Minnesota
Nathan Mueller is a PhD student at the University of Minnesota's Institute on the Environment. His research analyzes the feedbacks between agricultural intensification and global environmental change using spatial data analysis and modeling. Nathan has been assisting in the development of the agricultural models for InVEST, helping users understand the productivity and ecosystem service tradeoffs of agricultural systems. Nathan received his bachelor's degree in biology and environmental studies from St. Olaf College, and worked with the U.S. EPA Mid-Continent Ecology Division before starting at the U of MN.
Joanna Nelson works with the Natural Capital Project team to design and coordinate monitoring protocols across multiple watersheds in Latin America, in order to evaluate the effectiveness of water funds in supporting water quality, quantity, and other ecosystem services, as well as biodiversity. She brings her experience in ecological experimental design and water quality in the context of global change. She has worked with rural Costa Rican communities on water quality, with Koyukon Athabaskan communities in interior Alaska on resilience to a changing wildfire regime, and with many stakeholders in broad-scale estuarine ecosystem-based management. Her academic background centers on multiple global changes and their potential interactions and social-ecological resilience. Joanna is passionate about integrating local and scientific knowledge for improved stewardship of land and water. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of California in Environmental Studies and her M.S. and B.S. from Stanford University in Earth Systems Science. She is a co-awardee of the Ecological Society of America's Sustainability Science award.
Nasser Olwero oversees WWF US Geographic Information Systems (GIS) program including managing the GIS lab and providing GIS and RS support to the Conservation Science Program. He graduated from Moi University in Kenya (undergraduate and postgraduate) with an M.Phil. degree in Environmental Science majoring in Environmental Information Systems.
Science-Policy Interface Specialist
Amy Rosenthal is working with the team and partner sites to create science-policy interface tools that integrate environmental services into decisions about land management and development. Previously, she helped the Amazon Conservation Association establish an environmental services program, designed major initiatives for conservation of the Western Amazon, and developed a series of tools and methodologies for avoided deforestation carbon projects. She has run an environmental management training program with the Federal University of Acre in Brazil, evaluated a leadership institute for First Nations students with the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford, represented book authors as a literary agent, and studied carbon farming on Maori land in New Zealand. Rosenthal received an MA from Stanford University and a BA from Amherst College.
Jess Silver is a research assistant for the Natural Capital Project's Marine Initiative. The team is building Marine InVEST, a set of models for quantifying the services provided by coastal and marine ecosystems. Jess's research interests include marine and estuarine microbial ecology and biogeochemistry. She has a Master's degree in microbial ecology from the University of Washington, and a B.A. in biology from Wellesley College.
Jodie Toft, Ph.D.
Jodie Toft is working on Marine InVEST, a set of models for quantifying the services provided by coastal and marine ecosystems. Jodie's research interests include modeling of coastal and marine social-ecological-systems, fisheries bioeconomics, and ecosystem-based management. Jodie received her Ph.D. from the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences at the University of Washington and her B.A. in biology and public policy analysis from Pomona College.
GIS Analyst, Marine Initiative
Gregg Verutes develops the marine InVEST tools, a set of models for quantifying the services provided by coastal and marine ecosystems. His work focuses primarily on the automation and application of these models in Vancouver Island BC, coastal Belize and various demonstration sites throughout the United States. He also has experience as a GIS instructor and cartographer having previously worked for National Geographic Magazine and the World Wildlife Fund's Conservation Science Program. Mr. Verutes received his M.S. from the Department of Geography at the San Diego State University and his B.S. in Policy Analysis and Management from Cornell University.
Adrian L. Vogl, Ph.D.
Ecosystem Services Analyst
Adrian is working with the Natural Capital Project team and several water funds in Latin America to develop and apply generalized models and tools that evaluate ecosystem services and prioritize water funds investments, primarily related to watershed conservation. Before joining the Natural Capital Project, Adrian developed tools for hydrologic modeling and land-use planning decision support in central Texas (US), and methods for evaluating ecosystem services relating to groundwater recharge, land development, and conservation planning. Her research focuses on developing methods and tools that integrate science and sociopolitical realities to operationalize resilience management in real-world systems, with a focus on large-scale impacts of human activity and climate change on water resources and interactions between natural and sociopolitical processes. Adrian received her Ph.D. in Aquatic Resources from Texas State University-San Marcos, and her B.A. from the University of Arizona in Cultural Anthropology.
Stacie Wolny develops and applies the terrestrial hydrology toolset for the Natural Capital Project and supports Stanford's Center for Conservation Biology. After twelve years working as a system administrator and software engineer in Silicon Valley, she started studying GIS as a way to combine her computer background with a love of natural history and ecology. Stacie received a B.S. in computer science from Penn State University and studied GIS at Foothill College and San Jose State University.
Spencer Wood, Ph.D.
Spencer Wood works directly with partner organizations in Canada and Belize who are revising and evaluating their coastal management plans, using tools produced by the Natural Capital Project. His scientific research focuses on empirical and mathematical approaches to understanding interactions between humans and the environment in complex socio-ecological networks. This includes studies on patterns of tourism in Belize, ancient human settlement in the Aleutian Islands, and distributions of species interactions in New Zealand and British Columbia. Previously, Spencer participated in a variety of ecological studies on intertidal biodiversity, nearshore wave transformation, coastal sedimentation, and fire recovery. He earned his PhD from the University of British Columbia and is currently based in Seattle, WA.
Guy Ziv, Ph.D.
Guy Ziv is leading NatCap's work with the EPA and Department of Defense. He is a physicist experienced in modeling natural and artificial complex systems. His past projects include analyzing trade-offs between hydropower dams construction and fish biodiversity and productivity in the Mekong River Basin, and quantifying bird communities resilience to agricultural intensification in Costa-Rica. His research interest is the interplay between policy, land management decisions and land use change impacts on Environmental Services. He holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the Weizmann Institute of Science, and was a Research Associate at Princeton University before joining the Natural Capital Project.