Erle C. Ellis

Erle C. Ellis

Director, Anthroecology Lab

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1990
Professor, Geography & Environmental Systems
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)

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My research investigates the ecology of anthropogenic landscapes and their changes at local to global scales. Current work focuses on human transformation and sustainable stewardship of the biosphere (anthromes, anthroecology). Past projects have developed tools for global synthesis of local knowledge (GLOBE), inexpensive tools for measuring and managing ecological change across anthropogenic landscapes (Ecosynth, Anthropogenic Ecotope Mapping), and long-term ecological changes across China’s village landscapes. All of these come together in my main goal: informing sustainable stewardship of the biosphere in the Anthropocene. I teach courses in environmental science and landscape ecology at UMBC, and I’ve taught ecology at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design. I am currently a member of the Anthropocene Working Group, a Fellow of the Global Land Programme, a Senior Fellow of the Breakthrough Institute, and an advisor to the Nature Needs Half movement. I’ve published more than 100 scientific articles, and I’m recognized as a global highly cited researcher. I am the 2021 to 2024 Presidential Research Professor at UMBC. My first book, Anthropocene: A Very Short Introduction, was published in 2018.