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Earth is experiencing more rapid changes now than at any time in the past ten thousand years. The Karp lab is investigating the resulting trajectories of change in biodiversity and Earth’s life-support systems. Looking forward, a key challenge for humanity is to increase food production, while at the same time securing other vital societal benefits from rural landscapes. Meeting this challenge requires improved understanding of how agricultural practices affect yields, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. Our research thus focuses on developing innovative solutions for reconciling conservation activities with food production practices.

Our research program has five domains.IMG_2220.JPG

(1) We develop and apply ecological theory to understanding and managing biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes.

(2) We quantify the effects of alternative agricultural practices on biodiversity-mediated ecosystem services to people.

(3) We explore costs of biodiversity conservation to people through quantifying ecosystem disservices.

IMG_8298(4) We investigate how identifying tradeoffs among biodiversity and ecosystem services can inform the development of multifunctional landscapes.

(5) We participate in large-scale programs focused on monitoring biodiversity and ecosystem services from local to global scales.