Research

I am a current Ph.D. student, environmental optimist, and a wilderness enthusiast.

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My various research experiences have led me around the globe; whether exploring Muriqui monkey population demographics in the Mata   Atlântica rainforest of Brazil, supporting Kit Fox conservation in the high deserts of Colorado, or studying mammalian foraging in the Upper Peninsula North Woods, a common conservation theme emerged.

That theme, and the cumulative experiences that lead to it, now inform  my graduate research and career goals in Conservation Science. During my myriad ecological field seasons, it became evident that conservation and research efforts on the part of dedicated researchers could not come to fruition without recognition of the vast, complex knowledge and management rights of global Indigenous peoples.

My research, in the Great Bear Rainforest of British Columbia, Canada seeks to aid in uniting ecological science and Indigenous knowledge towards achieving conservation goals and national recognition of Indigenous management rights.

During my M.Sc. under supervision of Dr. Natalie Ban at the University of Victoria and in partnership with Dr. Alejandro Frid and the combined force of the Central Coast Indigenous Resource Alliance (CCIRA), and the Kitasoo/Xai’Xais, Heiltsuk, Nuxalk and Wuikinuxv Nations, we explored the traditional ecological knowledge of First Nation fishers and knowledge-holders, and assisted in on-going ecological surveys. Together, we showcased the power of Indigenous knowledge to fill temporal data gaps and elicit changes historical changes to populations of important marine resources, and worked to inform management of Yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) and Dungeness crab (Metacarcinus magister) in BC.

In 2017, I continued my research, partnerships, and adventure on the Central Coast when I joined Dr. Chris Darimont’s Applied Conservation Science Lab. While in its preliminary stages, my Ph.D. will seek to better understand value-based environmental decision making in Canada and globally, inform conservation of endangered species and ecosystems of the Great Bear Rainforest, and uphold Indigenous knowledge and proprietary management rights.

My work is supported first and foremost by Central Coast First Nations and empowered by their knowledge, vision, and collaboration. It is additionally sustained by funding through the Raincoast Conservation Foundation, and formerly the National Geographic Society’s Young Explorers’ Grant, the The Marine Environmental Observation Prediction and Response Network (MEOPAR) of Canada, and the tireless work of my many academic collaborators, friends, and colleagues. It is reinvigorated daily by my experiences in the beautiful wild that is BC’s Central Coast and temperate rainforest. The ecological complexities and interrelated systems that allow both to flourish must be matched by the integration of knowledge and Indigenous culture and rights that are equally complex and beautiful.

 

 

 

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Past ResearchFocused on the impacts of granivory by rodents as a mechanism to control invasive plants in the Upper Peninsula of Wisconsin and Michigan. My undergraduate research publication is available here.

For information on my past experiences, future goals, or other information, see my CV.

3 thoughts on “Research

  1. Pingback: Bon Voyage | Lauren Eckert

  2. Pingback: CCIRA Newsletter | Lauren Eckert

  3. Pingback: Taking a Moment; A Field Season Wrap-Up | Lauren Eckert

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