Sophie Wilkinson

Assistant Professor
Resource & Environmental Management


  • BSc, University of Leeds
  • MEnv, Environmental Science, University of Leeds
  • PhD, Ecohydrology, McMaster University


Dr. Sophie Wilkinson is a wildfire and ecosystem scientist developing ecosystem management strategies that reduce the negative impacts fire can have on ecosystems and society. She is currently an NSERC postdoctoral fellow with the FireLab in the School of Forestry at the University of Toronto. She completed her PhD in the School of Earth, Environment & Society at McMaster University, following a BSc and MEnv at the University of Leeds, UK.
Sophie applies an interdisciplinary approach to her research by incorporating field assessments and experimental fires with GIS and ecological modelling to understand the resilience of ecosystems and communities to wildfire. Her current research includes understanding patterns of wildfire severity and identifying ecological tipping points to high-severity fire in black spruce lowlands and mountain pine beetle-attacked forests of western Canada. In close collaboration with the Canadian Forestry Service and resource and land managers she is translating academic research findings into actionable management solutions in Canada and internationally, including developing a new fuel moisture index for the Canadian Forest Fire Danger Rating System. In her own time, Sophie loves to hike and cycle with friends and recently began training for her first triathlon!