Michael Dietze, PhD

Professor, Ecological Forecasting Lab at Boston University

Michael Dietze leads the Ecological Forecasting Laboratory, the mission of which is to better understand and predict ecological systems; he is the author of Ecological Forecasting. He is interested in the ways that iterative forecasts, which are continually confronted with new data, can improve and accelerate basic environmental science, while at the same time making that science more directly relevant to society. Overall, the lab approaches these problems through a balanced combination of field research, novel statistical methods, numerical models, and ecoinformatics tools. Much of the current work in the lab is organized under two broad umbrellas, the Near-term Ecological Forecasting Initiative (NEFI) and the PEcAn project. NEFI is focused on addressing overarching questions about ecological predictability while developing forecasts for a wide range of ecological processes (vegetation phenology and land-surface fluxes; ticks, tick-borne disease, and small mammal hosts; soil microbiome; aquatic productivity and algal blooms) and advancing statistical and informatics tools for ecological forecasting. PEcAn is focused more specifically on the terrestrial carbon cycle, improving our capacity for carbon MRV (monitoring, reporting, verification), forecasting, data assimilation, and multi-model benchmarking and calibration within the land component of Earth System models.

Dr. Dietze’s work with CEID is focused on predicting viruses at high risk for animal-to-human spillover, as well as geographic regions of the world at the greatest risk of animal-to-human and then human-to-human spread. His work furthers CEID’s mission of improving resilience using modeling and projections to assess the impact of climate change on our larger ecosystem.

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