Lab members and collaborators

The Smithsonian does not profer degrees, but that does not mean that a lab can't have an academic feel. I have post docs, technicians, interns, and work actively with PhD students as well as colleagues from around the world. The new laboratory at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center allows plenty of lab and office space for folks to pursue their research, and the QEL server has lots of cores (24) and RAM (128 GB) so that no matter where we are in the world, we can still crunch code on the same machine!

Jessica Shue

Botanist, Temperate program technician

Jess has extensive experience in plant identification in the mid-Atlantic.  She also facilitates the temperate program with plot instalation and re-census, workshops, and data vetting and curation.  She also participates in many research projects both at SERC and other temperate forest sites.

Chia-Hao Chang-Yang

Post doc

Chia-Hao studies species traits, masting events, and the demographic transitions from seeds to seedlings.  He has worked extensively in the Fushan CTFS-ForestGEO plot in Taiwan, a cyclonal forest.  He is also now working on using Bayesian directional statisitcs to quantify patterns of forest succession

Jessica Needham

PhD student, University of Oxford

Jessie is a satellite member of the QEL.  She's working on applying IPMs and IBMs towards tree disease dynamics as well as deer herbivory to answer community-level questions with available data.  

Alex Koure


Alex is an intern joining the QEL for a second time since interning this past winter. A graduate of Bennington College, Alex is currently working on quantifying how spatial variations in soil nutrients affect the growth and distribution of forest communities, and integrating these insights into larger IPM applications.

Cory Merow

Research Associate, UCONN (former QEL postdoc)

Cory is a leading expert on range-modeling and is focusing on developing mechanistic forecasts that are grounded in demography. He is designing statistical tools for ecoinformatics to facilitate the synthesis of multiple data sources across ecological scales.