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The Department of Natural Resources and the Environment conducts research on many aspects of environmental science and sustainability. With over 100 separate studies underway, it is difficult to characterize simply the research portfolio of the department, but generally our research contributes to:

  • understanding the dynamics of social-ecological systems with respect to natural resources management, biodiversity conservation and human well-being, in the face of invasive species, climate change, and other perturbations; and
  • assessing the effectiveness of management interventions attempting to resolve impediments to conservation, sustainability, and social-ecological systems resilience.

Current projects focus on:

  • terrestrial and aquatic ecology
  • ecological and human dimensions of fisheries, wildlife, forest and water management
  • invasive species ecology and management
  • human dimensions of energy development 
  • climate change effects and adaptation
  • environmental policy and governance
  • urban and rural community-based environmental stewardship
  • international conservation.

Our research is a mix of long-term studies on particular system and novel initiatives into new areas of environmental concern. We typically collaborate with other departments at Cornell, other universities, state and federal agencies and nongovernmental organizations focused on the US and abroad. 

For more information about our current research projects, check the faculty and graduate student profiles, as well as links to the webpages maintained by several of our research groups.

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