› 4/12/2016: Congratulations to Megs Seeley!.
Megs Seeley, a University of Wisconsin undergraduate researcher, was recently awarded a Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Fellowship to come join the Williams Lab as part of our studies on pre-settlement landscapes in the upper Midwestern United States.
› 4/12/2016: Congratulations to Sarah Supp!.
Williams Lab guest, NSF Postdoctoral Fellow and researcher extraordinaire Sarah Supp welcomes an adorable new future paleoecologist.
› 4/08/2016: Congratulations to Ben Watson!.
Our own Ben Watson has been awarded the Olmstead Award for outstanding teaching. Congratulations Ben, and thanks for all your hard work!
› 3/9/2016: New
Paper: Community-level models generally outperform species
distribution models when predicting to novel climates.
In a new
paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society,
Kaitlin Maguire and coauthors use fossil data from the last
deglaciation to show that CLMs have higher predictive skill
than SDMs when predicting to communities and climates with no
modern analog. Both CLMs and SDMs suffer reduced predictive
skill but the decrease is lessened for CLMs. These results
suggest that CLMs may be more robust when predicting species
and biodiversity responses to the novel climates of the 21st
› 2/17/2016: New
Paper: The changing fortunes of beech forests in the Great
Lakes region during the Holocene.
Lab member Yue Wang has a new
paper out in the Holocene detailing regional changes in
beech (Fagus grandifolia) abundance in the Great
Lakes region during the Holocene. Using Bayesian methods she
shows that the changing fortunes of beech are similar to those
recorded for hemlock during the Holocene and appear to be tied
to drought events recorded in the region, but the lack of
spatially continuous records and paleoclimate proxy data in
the region means that a direct link remains elusive.
› 5/4/2015: Sam
Munoz and Ashtin Massie in the news with a new paleoflood
record for the central Mississippi River.
Congratulations to lab members Sam Munoz and Ashtin Massie on
the publication of "Cahokia’s
emergence and decline coincided with shifts of flood
frequency on the Mississippi River" in PNAS with Jack
Williams. The paper has received coverage from Nature
and the St.
Louis Post-Dispatch. See the UW Press Release here.
Kevin Burke has been awarded an Outstanding Student Paper
Award (OSPA) for his AGU 2014 Poster
During the Fall 2014 meeting of the American Geophysical
Union, Kevin Burke's poster entitled "Improving estimates of
regional vegetation: Using pre-settlement vegetation data and
variable wind speed to quantify pollen dispersal and source
was awarded an OSPA for the Paleoceanography and
Paleoclimatology Section. The full list of OPSA award winners
can be found here.
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]
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,
› 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.
› 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
› University of
Wisconsin press release featuring the Williams Lab and
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
› 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
› 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