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Meet Erika Hersch-Green

Erika Hersch-Green, PhD, is an evolutionary ecologist and an assistant professor of biological sciences at Michigan Tech. She has been a member of ESA since 2000 and has been a part of the Plant Population Section. Erika currently teaches courses in Ecology, Evolution, and Plant Sciences to undergraduate students. She studies the interaction between plants and their abiotic and biotic communities. The work Erika does uses techniques from multiple disciplines of ecology, including evolution, genetics, chemistry, and physiology.

Erika was recently the recipient of NSF CAREER award and is the lead investigator on a project that is titled “CAREER: Can Material Costs Contribute to the Structuring of Biodiversity Patterns from Genomes and Transcriptomes to Multispecies Communities?”.  She will use studies in both the field and laboratory, and phylogenetic modelling to combine functional trait, genome, and transcriptome data to examine how changes in nutrient levels and climatic variables influence levels of biodiversity from plant genomes and transcriptomes to multispecies communities. The project received a research and development grant from the National Science Foundation.

Erika is currently working on multiple projects. One of her projects involves studying how the managing of invasive plants and/or insects has an effect on social, cultural, and ecological impact of various species, for example, spotted winged drosophila on soft mass fruit. Another project examines the ecological and evolutionary consequences of hybridization and polyploidy.