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Alan J. Tepley, Ph.D.

Senior Researcher
B.S. University of Michigan. M.S., University of Michigan. Ph.D., Oregon State University
Alan Tepley is a forest ecologist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute's (SCBI) Conservation Ecology Center. His research focuses on disturbance-driven forest dynamics, with particular emphasis on the drivers, responses and ecological feedbacks to altered disturbance regimes in the face of accelerating rates of environmental change. His work is largely field-based, and he has led recent projects in the Pacific Northwest, the Rocky Mountains, and New Zealand. His work spans a broad range of spatial and temporal scales to evaluate how global change pressures and disturbances interact to shape forest stands and landscapes. He combines multiple data sources and has developed novel methods to expand our understanding into complex systems that are not amenable to conventional approaches.
Currently he leads the field component of an National Science Foundation sponsored project to evaluate post-fire vegetation dynamics and identify the factors that confer vulnerability and resilience to conversion from conifer forest to shrub and hardwood-dominated systems in the Klamath region of northern California and southwestern Oregon. Along with collaborators at Harvard Forest, the University of Virginia and Portland State University, he is incorporating his field findings into theoretical and simulation models that identify thresholds and tipping points in landscape responses to altered fire regimes and explore management options under future climate scenarios.