My research interests span a broad range of disciplines and topics, but generally involve using quantitative and qualitative tools to examine questions about forest management and sustainability. During my master’s degree, I conducted a fiber flow analysis and performed interviews in five communities across the interior of BC to look at the effect of tenure arrangements and policies on indicators of local benefits. Part of this research encompassed an evaluation of the ways in which communities make strategic choices and negotiate tradeoffs to best capture local value from forest management. For my PhD, I am working with the Hakai Network for Coastal People, Ecosystems and Management in collaboration with the Heiltsuk Integrated Resource Management Department to study ecosystem-based management (EBM) implementation on the Central Coast. This research uses an interdisciplinary research approach that combines elements of forest estate modeling, traditional knowledge, policy analysis, economics, silvaculture, and forest ecology to examine questions about EBM through the lens of western redcedar (Thuja plicata) management – a species of critical economic, ecological, and cultural importance.
Although I have focused the majority of my attention on research in recent years, I have also been involved in forest management and forest operations for the past decade and a half, including on my family’s woodlot license on Quadra Island. Past consulting projects range from developing forest management plans to conducting ecological inventories, and have allowed me to keep one foot in the office and the other in the forest. In particular, my ability to escape to our family woodlot to fall trees, drive big machines, plan logging operations, undertake silvaculture activities, and think about inter-generational sustainability in the context of small scale forestry is key to grounding my research in reality.