Dr. Jason West
Dr. West, an associate professor with expertise in plant physiological ecology and ecosystem ecology, joined the Department in July 2008. He obtained a B.S. degree in Range Science from Utah State University and a Ph.D. in Botany from the University of Georgia. He was previously a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at the University of Minnesota and then was at the University of Utah on the research faculty of the Department of Biology. His interests include the roles of vegetation in such ecosystem functions as water, carbon and nitrogen cycling, with a particular interest in the characteristics of tissues found below ground. Understanding the consequences of global change for ecological systems is also a central focus, including the effects of changing atmospheric compositions, human activities that affect available nitrogen, biodiversity, climate change, and land use decisions. Stable isotope ratio analysis forms an important component of many of Dr. West's projects and is an active area of research, primarily targeting questions related to the water cycle and to the development of approaches to scaling up mechanistic understanding to address questions at large spatial scales.