The technology: I spend probably too much time on technology R&D and planning for scientifically-based research and engineering. End-to-end scientific workflows now require reliable networks, advanced and modular software, and distributed computing in order to assimilate data and attack problems at scale. Institutional-scale research technology support in academia is just beginning to coalesce as a new “boundary spanning” career track, and changing institutional administrative culture to adopt and invest in advanced technology capability is an ongoing challenge. Science that leverages technology effectively becomes larger in scale, more useful to stakeholders, and highly competitive. I seek to improve both institutional and national research technology capability through a variety of projects, collaborations, and community engagements.
The science: I am an environmental scientist and technology specialist interested in past and present landscape processes, and how these relate to human activities. My specialization is in the Great Basin region of North America and semi-arid mountain geography, where I have been living and working for decades. I seek to better understand how past climatic history has influenced all aspects of modern landscapes, and how this knowledge can aid people in their actions as they live today and plan for the future.
Tools that I use to observe the natural world include the study of tree-ring records, in-situ monitoring using electronic sensory systems, and automated collection of imagery on sites of interest. Syntheses of these observed data across scales of time and space increase my personal understanding of past and present processes and enable me to ask better questions and refine study designs. I leverage modern technology to effectively communicate findings and real-time information from remote locations to a wide audience. I see the scientific process itself as an orderly, useful tool to help people optimize their activities in regards to each other and the world around them.