US Forest Service Research & Development
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  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Louis Iverson

Louis Iverson

Landscape Ecologist
359 Main Road
United States

Phone: 740-368-0097
Contact Louis Iverson

Current Research

  • Climate change impacts: we have developed models for 135 tree species and 150 bird species on potential impacts of several scenarios of climate change. We use statistical modeling tools related to classification and regression trees; our current favorite tool is random forest. We also use a simulation of migration over 100 years to estimate potential spread of trees into the new suitable habitat made available via climate change.
  • Emerald ash borer: we are modeling the potential spread of the organism through a migration model. We are also assessing and mapping the basal area of potential host (ash) in the region.
  • Prescribed fire and oak restoration: we are evaluating the role of fire in regenerating oak and other tree species across the landscape, including under mesic, intermediate, and xeric conditions (via the Integrated Moisture Index).
  • GIS modeling: we continue to use GIS in modeling outcomes in a variety of projects, currently including the modeling of damage from the tsunami in Aceh Province, Indonesia, in December 2004.

Research Interests

I plan to pursue the same lines of research in the future. As a pioneer in GIS modeling in landscape ecology (over 23 years), I know expanding opportunities continue to make the marriage of ecology and GIS/remote sensing more fruitful and applicable to managing our natural resources.. I would like to increase my research into the international arena, like my recent efforts into assessing disaster issues.

Why This Research is Important

  • Estimation of climate change impacts are being requested by many sources to better understand the implications of various scenarios over the next 100 years
  • Estimation of emerald ash borer spread is important to give managers better indications of when the organism will impact their forests
  • Facilitation of oak regeneration is important to provide sustained oak and hickory, and all the economic and ecological benefits they provide, over the long term
  • GIS modeling, like modeling areas susceptible to tsunami damage, can be used for susceptibility mapping and warning


  • University of North Dakota, Ph.D. Biology 1981
  • University of North Dakota, B.S. Biology 1976

Professional Experience

  • Adjunct Professor, Ohio State University

Professional Organizations

  • IUFRO-Landscape Ecology, Co-Chair Program (2011 - Current)
  • Ecological Society of America, Senior Ecologist (1998 - Current)
  • International Association for Landscape Ecology (U.S. Chapter), Former President, Treasurer, Program Chair (1993 - Current)
  • Ecological Society of America, Lifetime Member (1974 - Current)
  • Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society, Lifetime Member (1974 - Current)
  • International Association for Landscape Ecology, Vice Chair (2003 - 2007)

Awards & Recognition

  • Distinguished Service Award, International Association for Landscape Ecology, 2015
    For distinguished service over 25+ years to IALE and US-IALE.
  • Distinguished Landscape Ecologist Award, 2002
    Highest honor given by the International Association for Landscape Ecology (US Chapter)

Featured Publications & Products


Research Highlights


Ash Trees at the Confluence of Two Threats: Emerald Ash Borer and Climate Change

Black ash, the iconic wetland species of the Northwoods, is threatened by both the emerald ash borer and changing climate. What tree species mig ...


Defining and Mapping Landtypes to Encourage Shared Stewardship and Oak Management in Southeastern Ohio

Mapping land types across public and private landscapes encourages shared stewardship by providing owners or managers consistent tools for delin ...


Equipping Forest Managers to Respond to Two Threats to Ash

Forest Service scientists used field data and models to assess both the threats to, and potential replacement species for, black ash, a species ...


Forecasts from Multiple Models Provides more Reliable Results

Using multiple models instead of a single model allows researchers to develop more reliable forecasts of future forest change.


Managing for a delicious ecosystem service under climate change

Maple syrup is a highly valued resource produced primarily from the sap of the sugar maple. Understanding how this resource may be impacted by c ...


Mapping U.S. Drought Projections Helps Foresters Plan for Sustainability

Droughts are natural disturbances that can cause negative effects on natural ecosystems and also have important social and economic consequences ...


Potential Changes Expected in Sugar Maple Syrup Production

Scientists expect climate change to decrease the quantity of maple syrup produced per tap, especially in locations more peripheral in the curren ...


The hunt for good oak regeneration sites

Landscape modeling and field sampling may identify the best locations for restoring oak forests. Managers at the Wayne National Forest are using ...


Last updated on : 01/18/2022