Biodiversity and Global Change Plenary Speakers

Natural History 2.0: How the social internet is revolutionizing entomology
Morgan D. Jackson, PhD
McGill University

Dr. Morgan Jackson is a Postdoctoral Researcher in the McGill University Lyman Entomological Museum. A Diptera systematist with a specialization in the taxonomy and relationships of acalyptrate flies, he is especially interested in the creation and use of identification resources and how these tools can be optimized for the digital era. He has been involved with online science communication via blogging and other social media for the last decade, and has been a longtime proponent of the importance of social media for entomological engagement. His current research focus combines his interests in insect taxonomy, social media, and digital technologies to look at how people are sharing and interacting with insects and natural history observations through sites like iNaturalist.

Arthropod decline in grasslands and forests is associated with landscape-level drivers
Sebastian Seibold, PhD
Technical University Munich

Dr. Sebastian Seibold is a scientist at the Technical University of Munich and research coordinator in Berchtesgaden National Park, Germany. Most of his research is focused on natural dynamics of insect communities in forests and grasslands and on the effects of land use, such as forestry and agriculture, on insect biodiversity and community composition. This works aims at providing guidelines for insect conservation in managed ecosystems. Moreover, he studies the role of insect diversity for ecosystem processes, such as wood decomposition. He received a PhD in forest ecology working on biodiversity of insects related to deadwood and a MSc in forest science from the Technical University of Munich. He worked as postdoc at the USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station and at the University of Toronto. His recent work within the Biodiversity-Exploratories Project shed new light on the extent and the drivers of declining insect populations in Central Europe. 

Spatial and temporal variation in dragonfly biodiversity
Jessica Ware, PhD
American Museum of Natural History

Jessica Ware is an assistant curator in invertebrate zoology at the American Museum of Natural History. Dr. Ware’s research focuses on the evolution of behavioral and physiological adaptations in insects, with an emphasis on how these occur in Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) and Dictyoptera (termites, cockroaches and mantises). Her research group focuses on phylogenetics/phylogenomics and uses these tools to inform their work on reproductive, social and flight behaviors in insects. Jessica holds a BSc from the University of British Columbia in Canada, and a PhD from Rutgers, New Brunswick. She was an NSF postdoctoral fellow at the AMNH 2008-2010, before being hired at Rutgers Newark where she was an associate professor of evolutionary biology. She is the current president of the Worldwide Dragonfly Association, and serves as an elected board member on the executive committee of the Entomological Society of America Governing Board. She was recently awarded a PECASE medal from the US government for her work on insect evolution.

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