You could say that Scott Mangan began his ecology field work as a child, exploring the forest in his own back yard in rural Wisconsin. As a child, he was always fascinated by the multitude of species interactions that occurred in the small woodlot near his home. His early interests led him to complete undergraduate and master’s degrees in Biology at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. It was there where community ecologist, Dr. Gregory Adler, first introduced him to the extreme diversity of tropical forests of Central America and Southeast Asia. He completed his PhD at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana with Dr. James Bever. For both his Masters and doctoral research, he focused on determining the ecological importance of soil-borne fungi to tropical forest regeneration. Most tropical trees are dependent on the symbiotic relationship with mycorrhizal fungi. These belowground fungi colonize tree roots and effectively increase the surface area of the tree’s root system. The fungus provides the tree with the ability access scarce nutrients, whereas the tree provides the fungus with sugars.
EnSt 310 – Ecological Economics: Our planet is finite but our economic theories and practices assume the planet is infinite. This paradox has begun to have political and economic consequences. Continuing our business-as-usual, infinite planet ways will lead to ecosystem--and social, economic and political--collapse. One alternative to infinite-planet economic theory is Ecological Economics, which can be described as economics as if the laws of thermodynamics applied to economic activity. Alone among disciplines with any aspiration to analytic rigor, the field of economics has remained unaffected by the thermodynamic revolution that transformed life and earth sciences in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Ecological economics thus represents the continuation of the thermodynamic revolution begun in the 1880s. This course is designed to give you an appropriate grounding in the fundamental assumptions, the conceptual novelties, and the distinctive tools of analysis that comprise this emergent school of economic theory, while placing this theorizing in historical (and ecological) context. We'll pay particular attention to how the precepts and practice of Ecological Economics illuminate the the largest challenge facing humans today, the necessity of developing an ecologically sustainable society, one that is sized to the non-negotiable source-and-sink limits of our finite planet.
EnSt 380 - Applications in GIS: We have been able to expand the ever popular Applications in GIS (ENSt 380) course by adding a 3rd section for Spring 2016! This course will allow you to gain a set of applied skills that you can use to address environmental issues thru map creation and a variety of geospatial analyses. Consider adding it to your schedule, as there are still spots available in this 3rd section! In addition to gaining a great set of skills, taking this course now will allow you to fulfill the pre-requisite for a new advanced GIS course that we will be adding in Fall 2016. This new course will allow you to expand your GIS knowledge with more advanced concepts and tools.