Bill Currie Ph.D.


Ph.D., Natural Resources, 1995, University of New Hampshire M.Sc., Environmental Sciences, 1992, University of Virginia Sc.B., Physics, 1983, Brown University

Bill studies the linkages among carbon, nutrient, and water cycling and energy flows and transformations in terrestrial ecosystems and human-environment systems.  He is interested in using our current understanding of ecosystems to explore creative, new understanding of the two-way interactions in human-environment systems.  He works at scales from field plots to landscapes, collaborating with other researchers and students to integrate understanding and build models for synthesis.  The goal of this research is to contribute to the developing field of sustainability science using an approach that grows out of ecosystem science. 

Bill has a background in ecosystem ecology, biogeochemistry (nutrient and carbon cycling), energetics, systems dynamics modeling and individual-based / agent-based modeling. He is interested in using our current understanding in these fields to investigate ecosystem change and dynamics in coupled human-environment systems.  For more information see his research web page:

Current/Recent Research:

  • Modeling land use dynamics coupled to landscape C storage in human-dominated residential land in Michigan
  • Modeling the vulnerability of Great Lakes coastal wetlands to eutrophication and invasive plant species
  • Forest decision making, biofuels, elevated N deposition, and forest carbon storage
  • Assessing carbon and energy flows and the food-fiber footprint in a coupled human-environment system:  rural villages in the Indian Himalayas
  • Ecosystem processes in models of human-environment systems

Selected Recent Publications/Presentations:

Currie, William S., Deborah E. Goldberg, Jason Martina, Radka Wildova, Emily Farrer, and Kenneth Elgersma.  2014.  Emergence of nutrient-cycling feedbacks related to plant size and invasion success in a wetland community-ecosystem model.  Ecological Modelling 282: 69-82.  

Currie William S., Sarah Kiger, Joan I. Nassauer, Meghan Hutchins, Lauren L. Marshall, Daniel G. Brown, Rick L. Riolo, Derek T. Robinson, and Stephanie K. Hart. Multi-scale heterogeneity in vegetation and soil carbon in exurban residential land of Southeastern MI. Ecological Applications, in press

Currie, William S. and Stephanie Hart.  Climatic gradients and human development pressure determine spatial patterns of forest fragmentation across the Great Lakes basin, USA.  Landscape Ecology, In review.  

Brunner, Anna, William S. Currie, and Shelie Miller. 2015. Cellulosic ethanol production: Landscape scale net carbon strongly affected by forest decision making. Biomass and Bioenergy 83:32-41. 
Currie, William S.  2011.  Units of nature or processes across scales?  The ecosystem concept at age 75.  (Invited Tansley Review.)  New Phytologist 190:21-34.