Richardson Lab

Offices: 421, 422 (617-496-0825) and 401

Lab: 138 (617-496-1531)

Harvard University Herbaria

Current Lab Group

Andrew Richardson

Faculty Web Page

Principal Investigator

Associate Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology

PhD 2003, Yale University, School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

HUH 421 (tel. 617-496-1277)

Research Interests: Terrestrial ecosystems, forest ecology and the carbon cycle; biosphere-atmosphere interactions; biological impacts of climate change; feedbacks between vegetation and the climate system; plant phenology; data-model fusion and inverse modeling. Curriculum vitae: Download PDF

Koen Hufkens

Postdoctoral Fellow

Postdoctoral Fellow (Boston University, 2009-2011)

PhD 2009, University of Antwerp, Belguim

HUH 401

Research Interests: Biogeography and macro-ecology with a strong background in remote sensing and numerical ecology. Past research included quantification of forest fragmentation, characterization of land surface dynamics (phenology) using (near-surface) remote sensing data, assessments of the stand dynamics and eco-physiology (using wood core stable isotopes) of humid tropical forests (DR Congo). My current research focusses on modelling inter- and intra-annual variability of grassland phenology.

Margaret Kosmala

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD 2013, University of Minnesota

HUH 401

Research Interests: Community dynamics, biodiversity, ecosystem function and resilience, macro ecology and sustainability, impact of human activity on natural systems, quantitative methods for processing and analyzing large ecological data sets, citizen science.

David Basler

Bullard Fellow, Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD 2013, University of Basel, Switzerland

HUH 422

Research Interests: My research interest is to bridge from observed patterns to a mechanistic understanding of the biological processes in plants and ecosystems, and their interaction with the abiotic environment. My main research focus is on tree phenology, its physiological controls and climate effects on tree tissue formation. Current research focuses on age-related (ontogenetic) and ecotypic patterns of phenology, in order to enable better predictions of forest development and productivity in future climate scenarios.

Stephen Klosterman

PhD Student, NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship

HUH 138


Research Interests: Terrestrial ecosystems, global change, trace gas fluxes, biometeorology, plant phenology. Field studies and modeling.

Morgan Furze

Personal Web Page

PhD Student, NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Lab Safety Officer

HUH 138

Research Interests: Nonstructural carbohydrate storage, forest ecology, global change, and application of isotopes.

Meghan Blumstein

PhD Student, NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Lab Webmaster

HUH 138

Research Interests: Global change, forest landscape genomics, nonstructural carbohydrate storage, vegetation-climate feedbacks, forest resiliency.

Emma Borjigin-Wang

Undergraduate Student, Harvard College, Class of 2017

HUH 138

Research Interests: Global change, terrestrial ecosystems, vegetation-climate feedbacks, nonstructural carbon dynamics, impact of human activity on ecosystems, sustainable land use and reforestation.

Molly Wieringa

Undergraduate Student, Harvard College, Class of 2019

HUH 138

Research interests: forest ecology, global change, dendrochronology.

Aaron Viser

Undergraduate Student, Harvard College, Class of 2019

HUH 138

Research interests: forest ecology, global change, conservation biology, and biodiversity.

John O'Keefe

Field Phenologist

Fisher Museum Coordinator, Harvard Forest - retired

PhD 1987, University of Massachusetts/Amherst

Research Interests: Plant phenology and climate interactions; forest and environmental history and long-term studies; improving K-12 environmental education; conservation practices and conservation biology.

Visitors and regular collaborators

Mariah Carbone

Personal Web Page

Research Scientist, University of New Hampshire

PhD 2007, University of California Irvine

HUH 422

Research Interests: Response of ecosystems to climate change, use of isotopes (14C and 13C) as tracers to study terrestrial carbon cycling, soil processes in arid and Mediterranean ecosystems, respirology, partitioning of ecosystem respiration (above vs. below ground, autotrophic vs. heterotrophic components).

Alatna Z. Richardson

Junior Research Fellow and Technician-in-Training

Research Interests: My research interests include collecting colorful leaves, finding mushrooms in the forest, and studying chipmunk feeding behavior. For fun, I like to watch construction equipment in action, particularly backhoes!

Mark Friedl

Lab Web Page

Visiting Researcher, Bullard Fellow In Residence (2012-2013)

Professor, Boston University

Research Interests: Remote sensing of biogeophysical patterns and processes.

Eli Melaas

Postdoctoral Fellow (Boston University)

PhD 2014, Boston University

Research Interests: Forest phenology modeling and terrestrial carbon and water cycles.

Julie Shoemaker

Research Associate (2014-)

Postdoctoral Fellow (2012-2014)

PhD 2010, Harvard University

Currently: Assistant Professor, Lesley University

Research Interests: Improving the mechanistic understanding of terrestrial methane cycling and release, particularly from wetlands. More generally, applying geochemical techniques to ecological questions, particularly relating to carbon cycling and climate change, over a variety of timescales. Other interests include redox boundaries and their impact on microbial processes, permafrost methane cycling, and interactions between climate science and policy.

Bruna Alberton

PhD Student, Sao Paulo State University

HUH 138

Research Interests: Ecossystem ecology, plant phenology and abiotic drivers, seasonality in tropical vegetation, leaf phenology, and CO2 fluxes.

Ian Breckheimer

PhD Student, University of Washington

HUH 422

Research interests: Plant community ecology, ecological resilience to environmental change, plant (meta)population dynamics, phenology, landscape connectivity, evolutionary rescue, ecological forecasting.

Lab Alumni

Veronika Cabellos

Web Page

PhD Student, Max Planck of Biogeochemistry (Jena, Germany)

Research Interests: Plant physiology and phenology; carbon allocation in vegetation; ecosystem ecology; global carbon cycle; climate change; sustainable development.

Elizabeth Rao

Undergraduate Student, Brown University 2018

Research Interests: Terrestrial community ecology; biodiversity; conservation biology; conservation medicine; carbon cycling.

Donald Aubrecht

Currently: Physical Sciences, Inc

Postdoctoral Fellow (2013-2016)

PhD 2013, Harvard University

Research Interests: Terrestrial ecosystems and the carbon cycle; canopy and single tree-scale heat fluxes; plant phenology; image processing and remote instrumentation; data-model fusion.

Graham Dow

Currently: Research Assistant Professor, Boston University

NOAA Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellow (2014-2016)

PhD 2014, Stanford University

Research Interests: stomatal development and physiology; plant-environment interactions and feedbacks; physiological climate forcing; developmental plasticity, adaptation, and evolution; predictive modeling; integrating and scaling cellular, organismic, and ecosystem processes.

Josh Gray

Currently: Assistant Professor, North Carolina State University

Postdoctoral Fellow (Boston University)

PhD 2011, University of North Carolina

Research Interests: The role of ecosystem processes in Earth’s carbon and water cycles, and their interaction with the climate system.

Bridget Darby

Undergraduate Student (Boston College, Class of 2013)

REU Intern at Harvard Forest (2011)

Visiting Graduate Student (2016)

Claire Stolz

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2016)

HUH 136

Research Interests: Global change, conservation biology, forest community ecology, nonstructural carbon dynamics, and agroecology.

Min Chen

Personal Web Page

Currently: Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Postdoctoral Fellow (2013-2015)

PhD 2013, Purdue University

Research Interests: Mechanistic ecosystem/land surface modeling and applications; improving the current understanding of carbon and water cycles between the terrestrial ecosystems and atmosphere, especially at large spatial scales. I use models to develop and test hypotheses regarding the importance of various factors in regulating the long-term atmosphere-biosphere interactions, and explore the associated uncertainties.

Diana Tomback

Visiting Researcher, Bullard Fellow in Residence (2015)

Professor, University of Colorado, Denver

Research Interests: forest ecology, evolutionary ecology, and conservation biology, specifically related to (1) Seed dispersal and ecology of five-needle white pines; 2) Conservation of whitebark pine and related five-needle white pines.

Carolyn Gigot

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2016)

Research Interests: Global change, conservation biology, plant phenology and climate interactions, biogeography, biodiversity, quantitative methods for large datasets, and citizen science.

Miriam Johnston

PhD Student (2014-2015)

Research Interests: Plant phenology, global change, carbon dynamics, biodiversity, biogeography, statistical model development & uncertainty, application of remote sensing technology.

Trevor Keenan

Currently: Research Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


Research Associate (2013-2014)

Postdoctoral Fellow (Harvard University, 2010-2013)

PhD 2009, Autonomous University of Barcelona

Currently: Research Scientist, Macquarie University, Australia

Research Interests: Improving the current understanding of, and ability to model, carbon and water fluxes from the terrestrial biosphere. Focusing on forest ecosystems, I use models of varying complexity to test and develop current hypothesis regarding the importance of different physiological processes in regulating both short and long term biosphere- atmosphere interactions.

Brett Huggett

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow (2013-2014)

PhD 2013, Harvard University

Currently: Assistant Professor, Bates College

Research Interests: Plant physiology, plant anatomy, xylem structure and function, plant biochemistry, dendrochronology, dendrology, forest ecology, and plant/fungal interactions. Focusing on nonstructural carbohydrate reserves in forest trees and adaptations and/or responses among tree species in relation to long-term or seasonal stress factors.

Lynda V. Mapes

Knight Fellow, Science Journalism, MIT (2013-2014)

Reporter, Seattle Times

Lynda is a journalist who specializes in coverage of native ecosystems, cultures, and environmental topics. She is the author of three books, including "Elwha, a River Reborn". As part of her MIT appointment, she will be based at the Richardson lab for the 2013-14 academic year to pursue a supervised reading on climate change and phenology, which will hopefully lead to a review paper. She is also working on a proposal for a new book.

Ross Booton

Visiting Student (2014)

MMath University of Bath

Dmitri Ilushin

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2014)


Research Interests: Computer science.

Min Lee

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2013)


Research Interests: Global climate, phenology feedbacks and societal impacts.

Alex Cunha

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2014)

Research Interests: Plants and climate change, nitrogen cycling in Pacific Northwest forests, specifically how migrating salmon introduce marine nutrients to inland freshwater systems as a byproduct of their life cycle. Currently working on a field study in the Klamath River Basin.

Andreas Westergaard-Nielsen

Visiting PhD Student (2013)

University of Copenhagen

Research Interests: climate change, image processing, phenology, and spatial analysis of Arctic ecosystems.

Michael Toomey

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow (2011-2013)

PhD 2011, University of California Santa Barbara

Research Interests: Remote sensing of forest ecology, emphasizing integration of in situ data with imagery to quantify forest ecophysiology; biosphere-atmosphere interactions; land cover change monitoring and human-environment interactions; GIS and spatial analysis.

Anne Kakouridis

PhD Student (2012-2013)


Research Interests: Plants, global changes and ecosystem processes.

Chris Round

Special Student (Harvard College, 2012-2013)


Research Interests:Biological impacts of climate change. Changes in species spatial distribution in response to climate change. Impacts of climate change on conservation practices. Conservation biology and restoration ecology.

Fiona Jevon

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2013)

Anika Petach

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2013)


Research Interests: Remote sensing and its applications to plant phenology.


Elizabeth Felts

Undergraduate Student (Harvard College, Class of 2014)

REU Intern at Harvard Forest (2011)

Research Interests: Forest phenology modeling and terrestrial carbon and water cycles.

Koen Hufkens

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow (Boston University, 2009-2011)

PhD 2009, University of Antwerp, Belguim

Research Interests: Quantitative spatial ecology / biogeography assessing influences of anthropogenic disturbances on ecosystem functioning. Characterization of phenology - climate interactions, using satellite (MODIS) and near-surface remote sensing.

Oliver Sonnentag

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow (2010-2011)

PhD 2008, University of Toronto

Currently: Assistant Professor, Université de Montréal

Research Interests: Understanding alterations in biosphere-atmosphere interactions due to global environmental change; local, regional and global biophysical parameter monitoring and mapping to study changes in ecosystem structure, functioning and phenology; GIScience education

Youngryel Ryu

Personal Web Page

Postdoctoral Fellow (2010-2011)

PhD 2010, University of California Berkeley

Currently: Assistant Professor, Seoul National University

Research Interests: Theory, measurement and modeling of canopy radiative transfer, photosynthesis and evaporation from plot level to the global scale. Environmental ecology. Phenology. Terrestrial carbon and water cycle. Application of cloud computing to the environmental sciences.

Shutao Chen

Visiting Researcher (2011)

Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing, China

Research Interests: Modeling the temporal and spatial variability of soil respiration; Measurements of greenhouse gases emissions from ecosystems. Responses of soil carbon and nitrogen cycles to environmental factors (e.g., UV-B and Acid rain) changes.

Cory Teshera-Sterne

Programmer (2010-2011)

BA Mount Holyoke College, Class of 2010


Chenrui Wang

Visiting Researcher (2011)

PhD Student (in Geography), Roskilde University, Denmark

Research Interests: Modeling leaf area index and leaf nitrogen impacts on net ecosystem carbon dioxide exchange in agricultural and forest ecosystems.

Motomu Toda

Visitor (2011)

Assistant Professor, Hokkaido University, Japan

Research Interests: Vegetation dynamics; terrestrial feedback response to changing climate, especially energy and carbon exchanges between an atmosphere and cool-temperate and boreal forest ecosystems; simulation analysis based on a prosess-based model; evaluating impacts of large-scale climatic patterns on annual variability in carbon dynamics in forest ecosystems.

Mirco Migliavacca

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (2009)

University of Milan

Jasper Bloemen

Visiting PhD Student (2009-2010)

University of Ghent