Welcome to the Williams Lab!
The Williams Lab studies vegetation change and its drivers, across diverse spatial and temporal scales, with an emphasis on the environmental changes of the last 20,000 years as a model system for global change research. Key research areas include no-analog climates and communities, the drivers of abrupt ecological change, and the interactions among vegetation, climate, disturbance regime, megafauna, and humans. We employ a diverse mix of tools (primary collection of paleoenvironmental data, data synthesis, and ecological and climate modeling) and seek to foster strong and productive collaborations, within and outside our research group. We share a strong commitment to advancing scientific communications, education, diversity, and mentorship from the undergraduate to postgraduate levels.
Please look around our site, meet the people who work here, and browse through our research and picture gallery. If you have questions, please feel free to contact us.
› 11/13/2014: News coverage on the historic US-China climate agreement with Jack Williams
Jack Williams commented on the recent emissions deal between the United States and China on Madison's WKOW TV. [video][text]
› 8/20/2014: Joint speeds of projected climate and land use for the USA
A new study published in Nature Climate Change calculates the combined velocities of future climate and land use change in the coterminous US. This work was led by former postdoc Alejandro Ordonez, with Jack Williams and colleagues Volker Radeloff and Sebastian Martinuzzi in CALS/Forest Ecology & Wildlife. The study reports that overall, speeds of climate change are higher than land use change, with the upper Midwest and eastern Great Plains as an area of expected to experience high combined climate and land use change. The projected rates of climate change are similar to or higher than the dispersal capacity of many species. Article, UW Press Release, ClimateWire
› 8/13/2014: The Williams Lab heads to Camp PalEON!
Simon Goring, Kevin Braun, and Jack Williams are off to the Northwoods for a week of integrated instruction in paleoecology, Bayesian statistics, and ecosystem modeling at the UNDERC field station, near Land O Lakes, WI. The one-week short course provides 15 graduate students with a crash course in the fundamentals of paleoecological data and informatics, R, and the statistical tools for data-model assimilation. This work is part of the Paleoecological Observatory Network (PalEON) and is supported by NSF-Macrosystems. Some course materials can be viewed here. Thanks, NSF!
› 8/12/2014: A new paper by Sam Munoz and others
A new paper is in press by Sam Munoz and others in the Journal of Biogeography. Sam's recent synthesis of historical, archaeological, and palaeoecological data argues that prehistoric human impacts in eastern North America were patchy, dynamic, and heterogeneous. These findings challenge the view that indigenous land use was widespread and ubiquitous.
› University of Wisconsin press release featuring the Williams Lab and PalEON
A recent University of Wisconsin press release features Jack Williams and postdoc Simon Goring for their efforts as part of PalEON, and the rise of Big Ecology.
› Jack Williams has been awarded the Romnes Faculty Award by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF)
This award, for professors within six years of tenure, is supported by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF). H.I. Romnes was the former president of the WARF Board of Trustees, and the award recognizes his service to the University through an unrestricted $50,000 research grant.
› Sam Munoz and Cahokia make another spash with a new paper in Geology & coverage in Discovery.
Sam Munoz's work at Cahokia has been published online in Geology, with coverage in Discovery News
› Sam Munoz and Cahokia make a big splash in National Geographic! (October 31, 2013)
Sam Munoz has had his work on Cahokia featured in National Geographic's Daily News feature.
*The views expressed in these twitter feeds do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, the Department of Geography, or other members of the Williams Lab. They should be understood as the personal opinions of each individual author.
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