School of Forestry & Environmental Studies Appoints Six New Faculty

The Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies has appointed six new faculty.

“Each has a commitment to scholarly research and teaching, and to successful environmental strategies and practical management,” Dean James Gustave Speth said in making the announcement.

The new faculty are Lisa Curran, associate professor of tropical ecology; Hilary Sigman, associate professor of environmental economics; Benjamin Cashore, assistant professor of sustainable forestry management; Kathleen McAfee, assistant professor in social science of sustainable development; Ann Camp, lecturer in stand dynamics and forest health; and Florencia Montagnini, professor in the practice of tropical forestry.

“These new appointments are part of a broad effort by the school to substantially strengthen the faculty,” Speth said. “We are also actively recruiting four other faculty in the areas of forestry, environmental management, ecosystem ecology, and energy-environment linkages. With good fortune, we will complete most of these searches this year also.”

Curran, who holds a B.A. in anthropology from Harvard University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Princeton University, will hold a key leadership position for research and teaching in tropical ecology. Her strengths are in basic research on tropical ecosystem processes as well as in using that research to solve environmental problems in tropical developing countries. “The school will be world-class in tropical ecology, and she will contribute tremendously to our professional degree program,” said Speth. “No one knows more about the plight of the vast Indonesian forest, much of which is gravely threatened.”

From 1996 to this year, Curran was an assistant professor of tropical ecology and ecological sustainability in the Department of Biology and the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan. She has worked on the ecology of tropical forests in Southeast Asia with application to sustainable tropical forest management.

Montagnini holds a B.S. in agronomy from the National University of Rosario, Argentina, an M.S. in ecology from the Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research (IVIC); and a Ph.D. in ecology from the University of Georgia. Montagnini is an expert in agroforestry and tropical forestry. Her focus is Central and South America, particularly Costa Rica and Argentina.

Sigman holds a B.A. in economics and studies in the environment from Yale College; an M.Phil. in economics from Cambridge University; and a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sigman specializes in the economics of public policies for environmental protection. She has focused her research on water quality in international rivers. Her paper on “International Spillovers and Water Quality in Rivers: Do Countries Free Ride?” examines the extent to which environmental resources shared among countries suffer worse pollution than wholly domestic resources.

Cashore earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees in political science from Carleton University, and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Toronto. He was a Fulbright Scholar at Harvard University from 1996 to 1997. He is a policy scientist by training, and prior to joining F&ES taught natural resource policy at the University of Auburn. He will teach in the areas of forest policy, international trade and forest certification for sustainable forest management.

McAfee holds a B.A. in zoology with a double minor in biochemistry and physics from Vassar College, and an M.A. in human geography and a Ph.D. in political-economic geography from the University of California at Berkeley. Her current research concerns new biotechnologies, intellectual property rights to genetic information and living organisms, and related challenges for agriculture, food security, the natural environment, and global governance. Prior to joining F&ES, she was the University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Camp holds a B.S. in environmental science from Rutgers University, an M.F.S. in silviculture and forest ecology from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and a Ph.D. in silviculture and forest protection from the University of Washington. Camp will focus on forest stand dynamics, particularly on the Pacific Northwest and eastern hardwood forests as well. Prior to joining the F&ES faculty, she was research forester with the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station in Wenatchee, Wash.

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Dave DeFusco: david.defusco@yale.edu, 203-436-4842