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  • Landscape Biodiversity Lab

    Montana State University
    310 Lewis Hall
    Bozeman, MT 59717


    Andrew J. Hansen

    Tel: (406) 994-6046
    E-mail: hansen at


    Current Research

     Vulnerability Assessment of Ecological Systems and Species to Climate and Land Use Change within the North Central Climate Science domain and Partner USDOI Landscape Conservation Cooperatives

    Contact: Nathan Piekielek

    with Diane Debinski, Bill Laurenroth, and Barry Noon

    Funding: USGS North Central Climate Science Center

    Project Overview:

    The goal of this research activity is to develop capacity within the USGS North Central Climate Science Center (NC CSC) to assess the vulnerability of key elements of biodiversity to climate and land use change. The information produced in this science activity will inform the development and implementation of management options. Our specific objectives are to:

    1. Use the Glick et al. (2011) framework and its components to organize our vulnerability assessment research.

    2. Evaluate the utility of a suite of modeling approaches for vulnerability assessment of particular targets in specific locations within the North Central Climate Science domain.

    3. Apply “best” methods to forecast ecological response to future climate and land use change in the context of the Glick, Stein and Edelson (2011) framework for vulnerability assessment.

    4. Explore the development of a community platform for biodiversity modeling and vulnerability assessment across the NC CSC university consortium through workshops, webinars, and conferences.

    To work towards the above objectives, the Montana State University team will model the dynamics of up to five key ecological system types (e.g., whitebark pine) under climate and land use scenarios across the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

    Collaborators are applying the modeling framework in three other test bed ecosystems including: Sagebrush Ecosystems (Laurenroth); Tallgrass Prairie and Montane Meadow Grasslands (Debinski); and Prairie Pothole Ecosystems (Noon).


    updated June 10, 2013