News and Updates
Jan 2022 Welcome to the lab Niraj Dayanandan, who will join the DesignLIFES NSERC Create team as an undergraduate RA working on a synthesis of green roof cooling effects
Jan 2022 Welcome to the lab PhD student Noa Davidai, co-advised with Emma Despland. We're excited to start branching out into urban forest entomology.
Jan 2022 Congrats to PhD student and new mom Fatemeh Izadi on the birth of healthy twins! We can't wait to meet them.
Dec 2021 Congratulations on successful MSc defences Kayleigh Hutt-Taylor and Serena Sinno!
Dec 2021 Good luck to Maya and Mathieu as they move on from their lab projects - we miss you already!
Sept 2021 Welcome to our newest MSc student, Michael Paulauskas!
Aug 2021 Congratulations to Gail MacInnis, who is beginning part time as a Research Scientist with GPRC - CRI National Bee Diagnostic Centre while finishing up her postdoc with us
Aug 2021 Congrats to the lab’s first MSc graduate, Emily Kroft! Emily has started an exciting new job as the Youth Engagement and Water Policy officer at the Experimental Lakes Area!
July 2021 Carly is excited to be part of a new interdisciplinary NFRF project on urban trees and public health. We’re recruiting students to work with colleagues at UQAM/U Sherbrooke
June 2021 Our lab is now officially part of the DesignLIFES NSERC Create project. Looking forward to working with great colleagues and students on living infrastructure
June 2021 Congratulations to Carly, who has been awarded a New Scholar Concordia University Research Chair in Urban Ecology and Sustainability.
June 2021 Welcome to Mitacs Globalink fellow Nicole, and Science College student Mathieu who have joined the lab this summer!
May 2021 Excited to be part of the National Park Seek team, studying access and equity of Canadian park and recreation areas
April 2021 Congrats to Maya (Biology), Megan (Enviro Sci), and Sarah (Fine Arts), who have all won NSERC USRA/Concordia USRA awards to join the lab this summer. We're so excited for you to join the team!
April 2021 Congrats to Emily, who presented her work at the International Association of Landscape Ecology North America (IALE) conference this month, with a student "travel" award!
Jan 2021 : Our new work on community science approaches to invasive earthworm monitoring is online in BioScience, co-authored with UW-Madison colleagues. Check it out here or email for access
Jan 2021 Welcome to Bella Richmond (PhD student) and Taylor Yeung (Undergraduate) to the lab! And a goodbye and goodluck to our first lab graduate, Kieu-Nhi Vu, who has completed an excellent honours thesis and moved on to an exciting new position!
Oct 2020 Excited to have my new course Ecology of Urban Environments featured as an example of how to teach biology in a pandemic. It’s been a challenging term, and I’m thrilled to be featured alongside such excellent colleagues!
Sept 2020 Welcome (back) to Katie Philp re-joining the lab for her biology honours project, and welcome to new PhD students Fatemeh Izadi and Lingshan Li, both starting co-supervised theses through the Next Generation Cities institute. Looking forward to expanding our research into increasingly interdisciplinary directions!
Aug 2020 Summer flew by! I guess we were too busy with great research and outreach to post updates. Congrats to a wonderful group of summer researchers for successfully navigating such a difficult summer successfully
May 2020 I contributed an essay for a collection on hopes for a post-COVID world: L’après-COVID-19: une transition vers des villes plus vertes. Merci à mes collègues pour m’aider à m’exprimer en français!
May 2020 Summer is here! Welcome (again) to Kieu-Nhi re-joining the lab for her biology honours project, and welcome to new summer students Majed (NSERC USRA student), Maya (Concordia USRA student), and Eco Canada interns Daniel, Elie, and Emma. Looking forward to a very interesting, socially-distant summer of urban ecology research with a great team
May 2020 Congrats to Emily Kroft on receiving an NSERC CGS M, Serena Sinno on her Concordia Sustainability Award, and Gail MacInnis on receiving a postdoc Top Up. Excellent work all around!
Jan 2020: Welcome to new Mitacs postdoctoral fellow Gail MacInnis, who will work on competitive interactions between wild and managed bees to inform evidence-based pollinator conservation
Dec 2019: Our new co-authored synthesis on the global impacts of urbanization on biodiversity is online in Nature Sustainability. Check out a great press release here
Dec 2019: Have enjoyed great speaking visits to UTM's Centre for Urban Environments, McGill NRS, U de M's IRBV, Kent State Biology, and Queens Biology this semester. Always a pleasure to meet new colleagues and collaborators, and thanks to all the great labs that hosted me!
Nov 2019: Proud to have participated in this initiative to plant 185 new native trees on Loyola campus! Thanks to project partner Soverdi, and to all the support from the Concordia community.
Sept 2019: Welcome to MSc students Emily Kroft, Kayleigh Hutt-Taylor, and Serena Sinno!
July 2019: Thanks to CBC, CTV, Montreal Gazette, and more for covering our work on the role of urban forest in reducing summer heat! Check out our Media page to read, listen, and watch
July 2019: Excited to be a Fellow of the Loyola Sustainability Research Centre here at Concordia. Looking forward to collaborating with great colleagues on Sustainability on campus and beyond!
May 2019: Congrats to Kieu-Nhi Vu for receiving a Concordia Undergraduate Student Research Award to work on a pilot project assessing the ecology of vacant lots in Montreal, with community partners. We also welcome new Concordia grad Serena Mohamed, who will be working with us part time this summer, before starting her MSc on native pollinators this fall! Welcome to the team, Kieu-Nhi and Serena!
April 2019:Thrilled to announce we have received NSERC Discovery Grant funding for the Ziter lab! Looking forward to welcoming new graduate students this fall to start our 5 year research program on "Biodiversity-ecosystem service relationships in spatially heterogeneous, dynamic urban landscapes"
March 2019:How many trees do we need to beat urban heat, and where should we plant them? Thrilled that our work on the cooling benefits of urban forests is finally out! Check out our new paper Scale-dependent interactions between tree canopy cover and impervious surfaces reduce daytime urban heat during summer in PNAS, or read the press release here
Feb 2019: New paper: Conducting urban ecology research on private property: advice for new urban ecologists, where we talk about lessons learned in the (urban) field. Excited to see this collaborative work to be out with fellow early career urban ecology colleagues! A good read for your next urban ecology lab meeting?
Jan 2019: Had a great time with Faculty of Arts and Sciences colleagues talking about climate change and the future of cities at the Beyond Disciplines event series.
Dec 2018: And we're live! The Ziter Urban Landscape Ecology Lab is officially up and running at Concordia University. We're still a one-woman team, but recruiting motivated and enthusiastic team members to join the fun (just uh, as soon as we get keys to the lab...).
Nov 2018: I am a co-author on this new report on Nature in the Urban Century, where we discuss where and how to conserve nature for human wellbeing in an urbanizing world.
Aug 2018: Our work on invasive jumping worms is out in Biological Invasions. Thanks to National Geographic for funding this work and UW-Arboretum for hosting the experiments! See publication page for access.
Aug 2018: It's official! I'll be starting as a new faculty member in the Department of Biology at Concordia University on Dec. 1st 2018, as part of the Center for Smart, Sustainable, and Resilient Communities and Cities! Can't wait to launch the Ziter Urban Landscape Ecology Lab.
July 2018: Honoured to have been selected as one of this year's PhD Excellence and Diversity Award winners by the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution. Can't wait to talk about my dissertation in Guelph later this month!
May 2018: I successfully defended my dissertation last month, and have graduated with my PhD! Thankful for all the wonderful support from UW-Madison over the last 3.5 years, and excited for next steps!
March 2018: Our recent work on soil-based ecosystem services is getting some great media attention! Check us out in The New York Times and UW Communications. Read the full paper in Ecological Applications
Dec 2017: Our paper on soil-based urban ecosystem services was accepted in Ecological Applications today. Excited to share this work with you all soon!
Oct 2017: I gave two invited community talks about invasive jumping worms in Madison (Dane County Gardner's Coalition, Madison Christian Community). Great to see enthusiasm for science from my community!
Sept 2017: I organized a city-wide community science event to learn more about invasive jumping worm presence and abundance here in Madison. Great to work with so many dedicated community members and stakeholders!
Aug 2017: I was selected as one of 11 women doctoral and medical students across USA/Canada to receive an endowed PEO Scholar award. I am this year's "Ventura Neale Trust Endowed Scholar". So thankful to PEO International for their continued support!
June 2017: I'm visiting the Wiersma and Leroux labs at Memorial University of Newfoundland for 6 weeks this summer. Excited about new collaborative opportunities.
May 2017: Honoured to have won honourable mention for best student presentation for my US-IALE talk on green infrastructure and ecosystem services.
May 2017: Our organized symposium (with colleague Matt Mitchell) "Accelerating urban ecology in Canada: identifying current research approaches, gaps, and needs in Canadian cities" was presented at CSEE 2017 last week. Great group of speakers, and stay tuned for updates!
April 2017: I was awarded the "Best Talk" at our Wisconsin Ecology Spring Symposium for my presentation on soil-based urban ecosystem services! Thankful for great feedback from the faculty judges.
March 2017: So excited to announce that I'm the recipient of a P.E.O. Scholar Award! Thankful for this extra support as I work towards finishing up my dissertation next year.
Jan 2017: Listen to me discuss my dissertation research on urban ecology and ecosystem services on WORT community radio!
Nov 2016: My urban heat island research was featured in recent article about weather bikes in The Environmental Monitor
Oct 2016: I was recently interviewed by the Isthmus about the Turner Lab's work on invasive Asian Jumping Worms. Check out the article: "Worming their way into Wisconsin"
Aug 2016: Another presentation of my work on urban soil ecosystem services at the annual Ecological Society of America meeting in Fort Lauderdale. Two conferences makes for a busy summer, but excited for great feedback and new ideas.
July 2016: Presented my ongoing research on urban soil ecosystem services at the annual Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution meeting in beautiful St. John's, NL. Had a wonderful time reconnecting with my Canadian ecology community!
May 2016: I'm officially a PhD Candidate! Thankful to a great committee for pushing me (but mostly thankful to have my prelim exams over!).
March 2016: I've been awarded a Garden Club of America "Urban Forest Fellowship" to explore the role of urban forests in mitigating the urban heat island in Madison this summer. Excited to get started! Check it out.
Jan 2016: I've been awarded a National Geographic "Young Explorer" Award to set up a field experiment testing how interactions between invasive species may effect ecosystem services here in Wisconsin! Excited to work with Nat Geo, the WSC project, and UW-Madison Arboretum on this project.
Jan 2016: Lots of thesis progress happening. C/N results are in, and prelim exams are scheduled for April! Excited to get back to work this semester.
Nov 2015: Analysis milestone - 1200 soil samples prepped for C/N and P analysis! Huge thanks to my awesome tech Lauren for helping get this done so quickly.
Oct 2015: Our Monteregie Connection paper (Linking landscapes, biodiversity, and ecosystem services to improve decision making) is now online at Ecology and Society. Huge thanks to awesome colleague (mentor, friend) Matt Mitchell for shepherding us through the process!
Sept 2015: Accepted! The first paper from my PhD work, on the biodiversity-ecosystem service relationship in urban areas is now out in Oikos.
Sept 2015: Just came home from the LTER all science meeting in beautiful Estes Park, Colorado. Lots of fun science and great networking.
Aug 2015: Just wrapped up my first PhD field season! We sampled for soils in 100 urban ecology sites, including lawns, prairies, forests, and parks!
July 2015: Field season is in full swing! Really enjoying interacting with so many Madison residents, and spreading the word about the importance of ecosystem services and sustainable cities.
June 2015: Taking a break from field season planning to attend #ComSciCon in Boston this week! Excited to learn more about effective science communication and meet new colleagues.
May 2015: Classes are out for the semester! Can't wait to start research with UW-Madison's Water Sustainability and Climate team this summer.
May 2015: I passed my PhD Qualifying Exams! One step closer to dissertator status.
April 2015: I've been elected president of the Zoology Graduate Student Organization here at UW-Madison! Looking forward to kicking off a great Grad Student Informal Seminar (GSIS) series in the fall!
April 2015: I was selected as one of 50 STEM grad students to attend this year's National ComSciCon in Boston. Can't wait!